January 28, 2019 / 1:35 PM / 6 months ago

Soccer-Burnley's Dyche wary of Man Utd's 'new manager bounce'

Jan 28 (Reuters) - Burnley boss Sean Dyche praised Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s impact at Manchester United and expects a stern Premier League test at Old Trafford on Tuesday from a resurgent side playing with freedom and confidence.

Solskjaer has won his first eight games in charge since replacing Jose Mourinho on an interim basis last month, with United’s increased attacking threat under the Norwegian making a compelling case for him to be given the job permanently.

“From the outside looking in, it seems like he has just tried to loosen it a little bit and put more freedom on it,” Dyche told a news conference on Monday.

“A bit more energy seems to have come back to the players. I think that’s a skill in itself. I think possibly that is what he has done; he has just given a different feel to the group in his own way.

“They have responded and are delivering good performances. It seems a little bit more spark, not massive tactical changes.”

Yet Dyche believes his own side can put a dent in Solskjaer’s perfect record, given Burnley’s’ improvement in their league form.

After a poor start that left Burnley hovering in the relegation zone and struggling to adjust to the demands of playing in the Europa League, Dyche has steadied the ship and they are now 16th and unbeaten in their past four league games.

“We have to have a clear mentality,” Dyche said. “The players know Manchester United are in good form, they know the bounce from the change of manager and the different feel there.

“But equally, we have been doing well ourselves ... So I think we have to look on that as well as keep an eye on the fact they are in form and are a good side.”

Iceland winger Johann Berg Gudmundsson and right-back Phil Bardsley face late fitness tests, while left-back Robbie Brady is unlikely to feature against United because of a groin injury. (Reporting by Simon Jennings in Bengaluru Editing by David Goodman)

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