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Having been beaten last week against West Brom at Telford, the under-23s start the home programme tonight in Premier League 2 when our visitors will be Sunderland.

The game will be played at the Lancashire FA County Ground at Leyland and will be the first home league game open to spectators since we beat Sheffield United 2-0 at Curzon Ashton in January 2020.

Rob Harker and Bobby Thomas scored our goals that day and they are two of just three players who will be available to us tonight; the other being Ne-Jai Tucker. Of the other eight, two of them are currently out on loan, Lukas Jensen and Joel Mumbongo, while the other six are no longer at Burnley and that six included Oliver Younger who could well be lining up against us tonight alongside Will Harris who came on as a substitute for us in that game.

Both us and Sunderland are looking for our first point of the season. While we were losing 3-2 at West Brom, Sunderland looked likely winners against Fulham last Monday only for them to lose 4-3 with the final goal scored in the 90th minute. Harris, who scored twice, and Younger both played with their former Burnley team mate Vinnie Steels coming on as a substitute.

Our first points of last season came in this fixture. Again, we lost our opening game 3-2, this one at Wolves, but then beat Sunderland 3-2. Our first goal then was a Morgan Feeney own goal which was followed by two Ashley Barnes goals, one of them from the penalty spot.

Tonight’s game at Leyland kicks off at 7 p.m.

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