Duff ended his 14-year association with the Clarets last September, leaving his job as U23s coach to take up a first managerial post at his hometown club.
The game promises to be a tough test for the Clarets youngsters, with The Robins commencing their League Two campaign the following weekend.
As previously advised, the U23s pre-season begins with a training trip to Poland, this weekend. It’s a first overseas trip for the Clarets at this level as they as they look to put in some high-intensity training as part of their summer schedule.
Stone’s squad will be based near Poznan at a high-class sporting complex used by the Portuguese national side ahead of Euro 2012.
The Clarets will end their near week-long stay with a game against Polish top-flight side Pogoń Szczecin II, in Opalenica, on the outskirts of Poznan, on Saturday, 13 July (kick-off mid-day local time).
The Clarets return to play four games ahead of the new season. Stone’s side will again go to Stalybridge Celtic and visit Curzon Ashton – the Clarets’ home venue at U23 level.
And there is also a trip to Bamber Bridge, another venue used last season, in a game which the EvoStik Premier club plans to use as a fund-raiser for the Lennie Johnrose Trust, after hosting a fixture between Burnley and Swansea City former players last
November in aid of the ex-Clarets’ midfielder’s fight against Motor Neurone Disease.
Under-23 pre-season fixtures:
Pogoń Szczecin II (A) – Sat, 13 July (12pm local time).
Stalybridge Celtic (A) – Wed, 17 July (7.45pm)
Bamber Bridge (A) – Wed, 24 July (7.45pm)
Cheltenham Town (A) – Sat, July 27 (3pm)
Curzon Ashton (A) – Wed, 31 July (7.45pm)
The new Professional Development League season is scheduled to kick off over the same weekend as the Premier League (9-12 August), with the fixtures schedule to be released in mid-July.
|Words: Darren Bentley |Photo: Andy Ford /Burnley Football Club