United loanee Bernard preparing to take on Andy Carroll

Manchester United defender Di’Shon Bernard is spending the season out on loan with Hull City in the Championship.

Grant McCann’s side are currently on a run of four straight wins and looking to make it five against Reading today.

Former Newcastle striker Andy Carroll now plays for the Royals and Bernard has spoken to Hull’s official website about the prospect of facing him.

Carroll was of course once an England international but injuries hampered his spells at Liverpool, Newcastle and West Ham.

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“I’ve seen a lot of him from when he played in the Premier League,” Bernard said of Carroll.

“It should be another good test. Hopefully, I can show people what I can do against the more experienced strikers. It makes you a better player when you play against better players. It’s a good test for me and hopefully I can do well. 

“It’s really impressive that he’s still playing at such a high level at his age. I know he’s tall and good in the air, so aerial duels will be a battle. He’s a Premier League player, so he’s quality with his feet as well. 

“I saw his goal in their last game where he brought the ball down and shot near post, so it’s definitely something I’ve looked at and hopefully I can stop him.”

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Playing against players like Carroll is exactly the kind of test Bernard needs at this stage of his career.

You won’t get that kind of experience playing Under-23s football, in the same way there is a different pressure when the results matter.

Hull are currently 19th in the second tier and look set to be in a relegation battle throughout the season. Bernard will learn a lot from the experience and should take confidence if he keeps a physical striker like Carroll quiet today.

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Sam Preston is an NCTJ gold standard news and sports journalist who studied with the Press Association. He also has a 2:1 law with French law degree from the University of Birmingham, which included a year studying at Bordeaux Montaigne University. He is an FA Level 1 football coach who appeared on the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire show in 2018 and has also written digital football content and match-day programme pieces for Colchester United, Mansfield Town and Stockport County.