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Burnley travel to Newcastle today and a date with their manager Steve Bruce who knows all about the Clarets having managed against us for several clubs which started back in September 2000 when Stan Ternent’s Burnley beat his Huddersfield Town team 1-0 with an Andy Payton goal.

Bruce has just kicked off his second season in charge of boyhood club Newcastle and said he was expecting a tough game against the Clarets. “You know what’s coming,” he said. “Dychey has got his identity, and I’m a big admirer of his, what he’s done, what he’s achieved.

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“There are different ways to play football. He plays two up top, two big physical centre forwards. They’re a bit direct, play off the front and ask you the question constantly, and have been very successful at it, so we know what to expect.

“Let’s hope we can overcome it and get a good result. If we can get a result and win, it would probably take us into the top six and a quarter-final of a cup competition. We can go into the international break then thinking we’ve done OK. We haven’t played well enough at times but we’ve stuck at it and got a few results.”

Sean Dyche will be hoping the Clarets can get off the mark having lost the first two games in the Premier League although he has consistently said, because of the injuries, that he expected it to be difficult. He said: “I’d prefer a good start to the season, of course, but I always thought this early part would be tough and that being said, we take on the challenge gladly. It’s always helpful to get that first win under your belt, but we’ve been down this road before and still looked after ourselves. It’s the story of a season, and I’ve always said that.

“We are stretched outside of getting results at the minute, but I still believe in the group I put out there. They showed at the end of last season that they are more than capable. So, you would like a win and points on the board early. Yes, but does it guarantee your season? No, it doesn’t.”

He added: “Once we get our players back fit I think we’ll look more rounded and I don’t think we are far off. We definitely should have got something against Southampton, I thought. And even at Leicester we create lots of chances, so there are signs. It just adds to the belief in the squad when they are looking over their shoulders and seeing very good players coming back to fitness. The depth of experience some of those players have in the Premier league, and what they have achieved, is bound to be important to the group.”

Turning his attentions to Newcastle and Bruce, he added: “I am a big fan of Steve as a fella, and a manager. His teams are always in good shape and with a good tactical understanding, so I expect it to be a tough game.

“We are beginning to get players back and I know they have a few knocks too. It’s never an easy place to go, regardless of the fact there are no fans, but from our point of view it is encouraging that we are getting bodies back, with the likes of Barnesy and Tarky, and we hope we can get the fitness of others improved over the international break.”

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