JAMES FORD insists that there will be no complacency from York City Knights as they face Swinton Lions for a place at Wembley.

York take on Swinton for the second time this season on Sunday afternoon (2pm), having convincingly won 64-16 at Heywood Road when they two sides met in the Betfred Championship in late April.

This time, a place in the 1895 Cup final is up for grabs, with the match taking place at Wembley in the curtain-raiser to the Beftred Challenge Cup final.

Despite being comprehensive winners last time out against a Swinton side that has yet to register a league win in 2021, Knights head coach Ford stressed that his side would not be taking the challenge lightly.

“They’re very dangerous opposition,” he said. “If you give them set starts then you’re doing to defend a lot of shifts and do a lot running from the inside out.

“I think that they’ve improved. They showed a really gutsy first-half performance against Toulouse, a really brave fightback against Bradford in the second half and they gave Batley a good game as well.

“We’re expecting a tough challenge and that’s what it should be, because in the Championship every team is capable of beating one another, especially in the semi-final of a cup competition.

“We know that we’ll need to be better than we were against Bradford and we want to be better than we were against Bradford.”

The Knights were on the wrong side of the penalty count in the defeat at Odsal and conceded six again’s, the latter of which has meant momentum can quickly swing in tight matches.

Ford said: “As you’ve seen over the weekend, a couple of late six again’s and penalties - and I’m not just talking about our game, I’m talking about the Wigan and Castleford games - they have a massive impact on a team’s energy and the scoreline.

“If you’re untidy and give officials opportunities to penalise you - and I’m not saying that referees are by the way, we just gave them an opportunity to penalise us - then things can go against you.”

York have not played at Wembley since 1931 and an opportunity to play in a cup final at the country’s national stadium would be a chance for the club to make history.

It would also signify the progress made over recent years by the club, who were playing at amateur grounds rather than a 90,000-seater stadium back in 2015.

“It would be fantastic, if we’re good enough to get there, to be able to coach a game there, for the players and the supporters to get to experience that,” enthused Ford.

“I think that it would be great for the club because we have come a long way as an organisation in a fairly short space of time. I think it would be another step forward for the club to be able to do that.

“But before we can start thinking of that, we’ve got to focus on Swinton and make sure that we get our preparation for the rest of the week and the performance right at the weekend.

“We’re preparing for this game as we would for any other. We need to make sure that we play well to give ourselves the best opportunity of progressing.”

Ford’s side will be boosted by the news that the capacity at the LNER Community Stadium has been doubled to 2,000 amid the current coronavirus restrictions.

“It would be great for us to get to 2,000 and it would be great for those York fans to get behind the boys, as they have done for such a long period of time, certainly over the past four or five years they’ve been fantastic,” said the York boss.

“As I’ve said before, they’re part of our performance and they have made the difference in some games over recent years, so I’m looking forward to hearing them get behind the boys at the weekend.”

York have made two changes to their 21-man squad, with Danny Washbrook and Tim Spears replacing injured pair Ben Jones-Bishop and Brendan O'Hagan.

York City Knights squad: Marsh, Bass, Salter, Atkins, K. Dixon, Jubb, Teanby, Clarkson, Scott, Cuthbertson, Brining, Baldwinson, Stock, Kirmond, Green, Spears, Porter, Whiteley, Washbrook, Dean, Lewis.