All you need to know about Sheffield United's Carabao Cup tie at Burnley
This evening’s Carabao Cup tie at Burnley pits Sheffield United against opponents who will be playing their first competitive match of the new season after being omitted from the opening round of Premier League games.
James Shield, The Star’s United writer, identifies some of the key figures set to be involved and the statistics which could point to how the second round contest will unfold.
The Possible Teams: Burnley - Pope, Bardsley, Long, Tarkowski, Taylor, Gudmundsson, Westwood, Brownhill, McNeil, Rodriguez, Wood. United - Foderingham, Basham, Egan, O’Connell, Lowe, Bogle, Ampadu, Fleck, Berge, Burke, Sharp.
The Referee: Paul Tierney last oversaw a United match in June, when he took charge of their 2-1 FA Cup defeat by Arsenal at Bramall Lane. The official, from Lancashire, was on VAR duty when Chris Wilder’s side failed to be awarded a goal following a Hawkeye malfunction, spotted by television cameras at the time, during the draw with Aston Villa earlier that month. David Coote, who sent-off John Egan at Newcastle towards the end of last term, will be in the chair at Stockley Park.
The Goals Column: Fixtures involving United and Burnley produced some of the fewest goals in Premier League competition last season, although their latest meeting is taking place in the cup. United matches produced an average of 2.05 compared to 2.45 for Burnley. The majority of goals both teams scored came during the second half of the contest, with United proving most prolific during the final quarter when, incidentally, they were also the most vulnerable. The 76 to 90 minute window was also the most profitable for Burnley, in terms of their finishing.
The Opposition Dangermen: Dwight McNeil, aged 20, is potentially Burnley’s most valuable asset having attracted interest from the likes of Juventus, Milan, Leicester City and Wolves, who beat United on Monday, since turning professional at Turf Moor. Chris Wood and Jay Rodriguez also form a dangerous partnership up front, with the latter being monitored by United before returning to his hometown club following spells with Southampton and West Bromwich Albion.
The Last Time Out: The corresponding fixture between these two teams last season finished all-square, with Egan scoring a superb 80th minute equaliser after his fellow centre-half James Tarlowski had put the hosts in front just before the interval. United enjoyed more possession (53 per cent) and more attempts on goal (10/9) during the match in July, but Dyche’s men produced marginally more on target (4/3).
The History Lesson: United enter this match unbeaten in their last two outings against Burnley, having beaten them 3-0 at Bramall Lane at the beginning of last season but searching for a first win at Turf Moor since April 2008. United have won 50 of their previous 124 meetings with Burnley, losing 42 of those, in a rivalry dating back to January 1890.
The Coverage: Burnley v Sheffield United, kick-off 5.30pm. The tie is being shown live on the Carabao Cup streaming service, while up to the minute coverage will be provided on The Star’s website.