Michael Carrick has told Middlesbrough supporters to dream of seeing off Chelsea and making it to Wembley, even if he is refusing to look beyond Tuesday's game.
And Carrick, who won the competition three times as a player with Manchester United, believes fans should believe they can make it through to a first domestic final in 20 years.
'Part of football is creating hopes and dreams and the passion and excitement, the fairytale,' he said. 'I was exactly the same when I was purely a supporter. That is what it should be.
'It is very different when you are in it. You have to be concentrated and a bit more business-like. That doesn't take away the buzz and excitement and the passion to do well. It is just slightly different.
Michael Carrick is aiming to guide Middlesbrough into a first domestic final in 20 years
Hot property Hayden Hackney scored the first leg's only goal as Boro hold the advantage
Carrick has told Middlesbrough fans to dream of seeing off Chelsea and making it to Wembley
'But certainly the supporters should be dreaming and making the most of it and wanting to play the very best, because that is the beauty of football.'
Boro were the better team in the first leg a fortnight ago and scored the game's only goal through Hayden Hackney in the first half. Does that give Carrick's side the advantage?
'There'll be the psychological factor, 100 per cent,' he said. 'It's not a copy and paste performance, it doesn't work like that.
'We know that, but the boys will take a lot of belief from feeling they can compete against teams and players like that. But the next game is always a brand-new scenario.
Chelsea were well below par in the first leg, but will be favourites at home at Stamford Bridge
'They just have to go and play well and express themselves and play exactly as they're capable of doing.
'In any profession you want to push yourself and see what the best looks like.
'For some of the boys it is the first time they have faced that level of player - can you cope? What does it feel like? How good are they when you come up against them?
'The boys have coped with that fantastically well and felt like they belong there.'