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Clarets Looking to Tame Black Cats

16 December 2016

The Clarets’ Development Squad faces a big game of their own on Sunday when they take on Sunderland in the Premier League Cup.

Michael Jolley will take a youthful line-up north to the Easington Colliery Welfare ground for the Group B clash (kick-off 1pm) against the Black Cats.

With the Clarets’ senior players all on duty at Tottenham on the same day, Burnley will have a mixture of Development and Youth Squad players available for the under-23 tie against the unbeaten joint group leaders.

Burnley won their last game in the competition, beating Cardiff City 3-1 at Turf Moor when over-age players Ashley Barnes and Patrick Bamford were on target.

“It would be nice to come back with something from the game,” said Senior Professional Development Phase Coach Jolley.

Aiden O'Neill helped Burnley beat Cardiff to gain their first points in the group

“But the big thing is the opportunity for our young players to play in this type of game and benchmark them against this standard of opposition.

“Sunderland have a very good Academy and are doing well in Division One of Premier League Two, so it will be good experience.”

Sunderland are currently fourth in Division One but coach Andy Welsh expects a test against the Clarets, who have taken three points from their opening two group games.

“They are a well-coached and well-drilled team and we played them in a friendly last season and they were a really good team,” said Welsh.

“We aren’t taking them lightly because we know they are a good team, but we are on a good run and we need to maintain that.”

The top two teams in Group B, which also includes Cardiff and Blackburn Rovers, will advance to the knock-out stages of the competition with Burnley currently third in the table, a point behind Sunderland and Blackburn with a game in hand on Rovers.

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