Burnley travel to Selhurst Park on Saturday for a late afternoon kick-off as they take on Crystal Palace, and they’ll be hoping to end a poor recent run of form where they’ve failed to win their last 5 league games.
Sean Dyche’s boys have been in incredible form this season. They have not only played some great football so far and have made themselves as serious contenders to finish in the top eight in the Premier League. However, the Clarets are currently having a winless run and will be looking to end the unfortunate streak when they face the in-form Eagles in their next fixture.
The two sides’ last meeting saw the Clarets winning by a goal to nil in what turned out to be Frank de Boer’s last game for Palace. That day’s hero, Chris Wood, will be out for Saturday’s clash along with Stephen Ward. While Tom Heaton and Robbie Brady are long-term absentees, Scott Arfield and Ben Mee are expected to start after recent injuries. The most exciting name will undoubtedly be that of Georges Kevin NKoudou, who joined Burnley very recently on loan. While Dyche confirmed that the 22-year-old will be involved in some capacity, most likely off the bench.
Burnley have made the fewest changes to their starting XI this season, Dyche shuffling his players just 18 times so far in the league, and a familiar team is likely to start in their next match in South London.
With Heaton out, Pope will start every game and he deserves to after a string of excellent performances. The back four is likely to be the same as that vs the defeat against Liverpool, Charlie Taylor lining up as the left back with Phil Bardsley as his compatriot on the right-hand side. James Tarkowski should be starting alongside Ben Mee in the heart of the defence.
Dyche is likely to field a flat midfield 4 as he has done for the whole of this season. Jack Cork is expected to partner Steven Defour in the middle of the park as the 2 central midfielders, with Johann Berg Gudmundsson playing as the right-sided midfielder, and Scott Arfield operating on the opposite wing.
Up front, we should be seeing the familiar frontline of Jeff Hendricks and Ashley Barnes. Barnes is a virtually guaranteed starter, with some big goals this season, having scored at Old Trafford and the Etihad over the last month.
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