MICHAEL Duff is hoping his Burnley Under-23s side can replicate the first team today as they get their Premier League Cup campaign underway with a daunting trip to Newcastle.

The Clarets face the Magpies, Colchester and Swansea in their group and the competition begins with a trip to Premier League 2 Division 2 side Newcastle today (1pm).

Duff accepts the challenge facing Burnley, who have moved up to the Professional Development League this season after being upgraded to a Category 2 Academy in the summer, is a big one.

"We're under no illusions, it's going to be a tough game," the former Clarets centre back said.

"They're a Cat 1, so they'll be strong. The 23s went there last year and had a tough time against them (losing 7-0). We're going to be up against it but it's a good challenge for us and we just want to see things we've been working on really.

"You never really know what sort of team you're going to play at this level, we've played an under-18s team, a team full of internationals and on Monday (against Hull) we played an under-23 team.

"It's different as you don't know what you're coming up against, but we can't worry too much, we know they'll be good technically, they will want to play an expansive brand of football, so we need to go there and be hard to beat, similar to the first team.

"The first team come up against teams who are technically better than them, I think most people, including the manager, would admit that, but they find a way to get a result, with good play and determination and we have to try and replicate that at our level."

Burnley enjoyed a win against a Category 1 side in Norwich in pre-season and Monday's draw at Hull City moved them on to four points from six games in the league this season, although they have faced some experience sides, including a Cardiff outfit with five first-team players on show.

"We went to Norwich in pre-season, it's why we play these kind of games. We got a decent result against them, albeit in a pre-season friendly," Duff said.

"The games the lads have had recently against very experienced players are good because they are in their way, these are the players they need to get ahead off, so playing against better players is always tough but you learn a lot more."