NEIL WARNOCK has urged his Leeds United side to round off a dream six months for Yorkshire sport by knocking Chelsea out of the Capital One Cup.
The Champions League holders travel to Elland Road for tomorrow’s sell-out quarter-final hoping to ease some of the disappointment felt at losing Sunday’s World Club Cup final to Brazilian side Corinthians.
If Leeds can prevail, however, it will mean two White Rose clubs in the last four of a major competition for the first time in almost two decades.
Following on from the Olympic medals won by Yorkshire-born athletes such as Jessica Ennis and the Brownlee brothers plus the success enjoyed by the county’s cricketers in 2012, United manager Warnock said: “The last six months or so have been a great period for Yorkshire.
“We had all those medals at the Olympics and then the cricket team (won promotion in the County Championship). Then, just this week, the young lad from Sheffield (Joe Root) came into the Test team and calmed us down to give us a series victory in India.
“There have been so many good news stories in Yorkshire lately. There is also the rugby (league, Leeds Rhinos having won the 2012 Grand Final in October) so it is a great time for us.
“Win or lose, it will be great for us. Win or lose, we have got to the quarter-finals of a Cup and beaten two Premier League teams (in Everton and Southampton) along the way.
“We are now taking on one of the top three teams in the country. We want to give them a good game. And I think it will be an exciting game.
“This weekend just gone, there were a couple of games (in the Premier League) where you were in danger of falling asleep. But ours won’t be like that.”
Leeds will tomorrow night try to emulate Bradford City, who last week claimed their own giant scalp to reach the semi-finals when knocking out Arsenal on penalties at Valley Parade.
If Warnock’s men beat Chelsea, it will mean Yorkshire has two semi-finalists in a major Cup competition for the first time since Sheffield Wednesday beat Steel City rivals 2-1 after extra-time at Wembley to book a place in the 1993 FA Cup final.
The Leeds chief said: “I texted Phil (Parkinson) after their win. It was a great win for Bradford, And also Yorkshire. Now we have our chance with two great games, Chelsea (tomorrow) and Middlesbrough in the league on Saturday. It is a fantastic four days for us.”