Rival boss seeks sound of silence at the Lane

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CHARLTON Athletic will show no fear at Bramall Lane, Chris Powell has insisted.

The visitors’ manager revealed his side are relishing the challenge of silencing one of the division’s most raucous crowds by cementing their place at the top of the rankings.

Athletic, who beat Chesterfield in front of more than 22,000 people at The Valley on Saturday, had won seven of their opening nine fixtures in the competition ahead of last night’s meeting with fellow promotion hopefuls MK Dons.

Speaking ahead of this weekend’s trip to South Yorkshire, Powell said: “We look forward to playing against a decent team at a decent stadium and we’ll be ready for it.

“I shouldn’t have any doubts about my team. It will be a tough road trip, I’m sure of that, but we’ll be up for it.

“I want three points from every game, be it at home or away.

“That’s the approach we are taking and it’s not going to change.”

Former Barnsley striker Paul Hayes is set to spearhead Athletic’s attack as the Londoners look to become only the second team to beat United on home soil since the season started. Danny Wilson’s side lost 3-0 to Yorkshire rivals Huddersfield Town earlier this month but responded by dispatching Colchester by the same scoreline before slipping to a shock defeat at Wycombe Wanderers.

United boast an average gate of 17064, and that crowd figure is topped only by Steel City neighbours Sheffield Wednesday.

“For me, as a manager, the players pick themselves if they’re doing the right things more often than not,” said Powell.

“They’re all performing and working really hard to stay in the team which is why we’ve been unchanged quite a lot of late.

“But we’ve got some high-quality players who are sat on the bench or who can’t get a game at the moment.

“So they players who start have to keep up high standards.”