Reading boss Paul Ince labelled opponents Sheffield United 'a very good outfit' ahead of their clash at Bramall Lane tonight.

The Blades have lost just once this season and are unbeaten at home, but the Royals sit top of the Championship with three successive wins and clean sheets.

On Saturday, a Naby Sarr header was enough to beat Millwall at the Den, with another tough away trip in the Steel City coming just three days after the win in South London.

Talking to the media after the Lions win, Ince said: "We’re still down to our bare bones. I went to Luton on Friday night and they’re a very good outfit. You expect them to be up there. We’ve just got to keep going."

Unexpectedly sitting top of the pile in the second tier, despite transfer embargoes and countless injuries, the former England captain has his feet firmly on the ground and is still targeting survival as the main aim.

"It’s great that the fans can say that. We struggled to stay in the league last year and I think the fans, who came in their droves to support us, never envisaged that after six games we would be top of the table so give them that and let them enjoy the moment," he said. "I’m just pleased that the fans have the chance to be buoyant, say we are top of the league at the pub tonight- that’s for them. Keep our feet on the ground, get to 40 points and see where we are."

Blades boss Paul Heckingbottom is looking forward to the clash with the Royals, hoping his team thrive against the team immediately above them in the standings.

"We're looking forward to it," said Heckingbottom. "It's another team at the top of the league, which tends to be how it is at the start of the season. It's just nice to be playing these teams when we happen to be at the top.

"We like that. We enjoy that. We know it's going to be tough, as Reading showed last season against us, so we're preparing for that. We're preparing for a really tough game."