Chris Wilder is predicting a tough and close encounter, when third visits sixth in the Sky Bet Championship on Saturday.
But Wilder hopes his side can build on an impressive win over Aston Villa prior to the international, a win that was a fourth on the spin in the league.
He commented: "We've taken a lot of positive from the Villa game, but it's gone now. Whether they weren't at their best and we were, that's up for discussion, but you can only beat what's in front of you.
"We're progressing nicely, but all eyes and focuses have been on a tough trip down to Bristol City on Saturday."
Speaking ahead of United departing for Ashton Gate to face Lee Johnson's in-form Robins, Wilder acknowledged what his counterpart has achieved.
The manager added: "Bristol City are another club who had a fantastic campaign last year and like us will have been disappointed to fall away at the death.
"But their cup run was outstanding and the way they handled themselves, played and beat the teams they did showed the Championship in a great light.
"They played football in the right way, it'll be two different styles on Saturday, but both will want to be positive and play and like us they will want to improve on last season.
"There is more expectation on both clubs, but like there always is the onus is on the home side to go and win it, the pressure is on when you're at home, it is with us, but on Saturday it will be on them."