Crewe Alexandra boss David Artell has labelled the Elland Road atmosphere as “magnificent” and heaped praise on the Leeds United support after their EFL Cup tie yesterday.
The League One side travelled across to Yorkshire to take on the Whites yesterday and managed to keep things level for the first 78 minutes before Kalvin Phillips opened the scoring.
A late Jack Harrison brace meant that Leeds were comfortable 3-0 winners in the end and earned their place in the third round of the EFL Cup.
Speaking to the Yorkshire Post after the game, Artell was full of praise for his young side after their resilient display but also waxed lyrical about Elland Road and the home support.
He said: “When you’re so young, which the majority of our team are, I suppose it’s a bit like childbirth for women for the first time; you don’t know what to experience.
“I’m not comparing our 18-year-olds to childbirth, but I think you get the analogy. You go into an atmosphere that is magnificent. You can see why this historic football club and their fans are held in such high regard up and down the country.
“If you can’t get the best out of yourself in a full stadium to capacity like this, then you have to do something about it. Our players weren’t daunted. They were terrific in their application and showcasing what they’re capable of.”
It’s been a difficult start to the season for Crewe, taking just one point from their first League One games and losing key man Charlie Kirk, with winger Owen Dale now looking as though he could follow him out of the exit door.
They’re now 22nd in League One and travel to the Valley to face 21st-placed Charlton Athletic on the weekend.
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Artell may well be a popular figure among the Elland Road faithful after these comments about the home support.
His Crewe side stood up well to the challenge of Leeds and should take heart from the EFL Cup performance.
A first win of the season against Charlton on Saturday would be massive for them and the Addicks themselves have struggled at points, so it looks like a fantastic opportunity.
The Valley won’t be quite the cauldron that Elland Road was and they won’t have to deal with the Premier League talent available to Marcelo Bielsa.
Artell should be reminding them of all that ahead of the weekend’s clash.