Lee Clark is relishing the prospect of Bury testing themselves against Sunderland in tonight’s Carabao Cup clash.
Sunderland - who Clark has labelled the biggest club outside the Premier League - face League One Shakers at Gigg Lane in the first round (KO 7.45pm).
Ex-Sunderland midfielder Clark was impressed with the performance of Simon Grayson’s side against Derby County and knows his Bury team face an uphill battle to progress.
“This is probably the biggest tie of the round, the biggest club outside of the Premier League and the biggest club that’s in this competition at this moment in time,” added Clark.
“I watched them on Friday and I was quite impressed with how they played.
“It’s a great game for my players, national television, home tie, crowd will be excited and what an opportunity for them to go and show people what good players they are.”
The tie will see Bury face ex-striker James Vaughan, who left to join Sunderland for £500,000.
Clark added: “It’s going to be great to see James Vaughan back, he made a massive contribution to this football club and certainly during my time he was superb.
“We hope we see the angry side of him on Thursday night about 10 o’clock because we know he doesn’t take losing very well.” Bury kicked off their League One campaign with a 1-0 win over Walsall, Vaughan’s former strike partner Jermaine Beckford with the goal.
One player definitely missing tonight is Jay O’Shea after he damaged his knee against Walsall. Scan results have shown a medial ligament injury and he faces six weeks out.