Burnley boss Sean Dyche will find himself in the opposite dugout to a familiar face today in Sheffield United’s Chris Wilder.
“I think Chris has done a brilliant job, not just there, his whole career,” said Dyche.
“I played against him all those years ago but I really got to know him a little bit when he was at Oxford because he used to come over to the Watford training ground.
“I often marvel at some of the people in this industry just because of their people skills.
“I live in Northampton and when it was international breaks or weekends off I’d try and get down there (Wilder managed Northampton from 2014-16), and if he heard that I was in the stadium he always made a point of asking me to come down.
“I just thought it was a great gesture and I always went down to see him, even just for 10 minutes before a game. I always enjoyed his company, still do when I get a chance to see him, still speak to him on the phone now and again.
“I met him in the summer on a golf trip and we had, I think it was an orange and lemonade.
“I’ve got a lot of time for him and his staff and players. They’re doing a great job and they continue to do so.
“We certainly don’t think it’s anything other than another very tough game.”
Dyche must mull over whether to try to extend Danny Drinkwater’s loan spell from Chelsea.
The former England midfielder’s deal expires on January 6 and so far his only appearance for the Clarets has come in a Carabao Cup defeat by Sunderland in August – after he was assaulted outside a nightclub in Manchester, sustaining an ankle injury.
Drinkwater is one of two definite absentees for Saturday’s trip to Sheffield United along with winger Johann Berg Gudmundsson (hamstring), while striker Chris Wood (hamstring) and Phil Bardsley (back) are both doubts.