In the second batch of fixtures in the space of 48 hours, champions Man City welcome promoted side Burnley, eager to remain hot on the heels of current leaders Chelsea. The Clarets need to start picking up positive results sooner rather than later in order to give themselves a good opportunity of remaining in English football’s elite division.
Man City have now won eight of the last nine games with the last seven being consecutive victories. City’s loss to West Ham back in October sparked a turnaround which has seen them excel in the league as well as reaching the knockout stages of the Champions League. Their last match resulted in a 3-1 win away at West Brom after goals from Fernando, Toure and an in form David Silva. The Etihad crowd have seen their team dispatch both Everton and Crystal Palace in the last two home games without conceding a goal and will hope to see them continue this rich vein of form.
Burnley on the other hand go into the game second from bottom and in desperate need of points in order to stay in touch with the teams around them, especially with matches coming thick and fast. Sean Dyche’s men have won three, lost three and drawn two of their last eight fixtures and will be disappointed with their last result at home to Liverpool. Despite a dominant display, Burnley were unable to take their chances and were punished by a Raheem Sterling goal which stole all three points. A similar performance would be welcome against City but chance conversion will be a major factor if they are to gain anything from the game.
City’s main issue is in the striking department with talisman Sergio Aguero out until January with a knee injury. Edin Dzeko is suffering from a calf injury but Stefan Jovetic returned to the bench after injury and is in contention for the game against Burnley. Manuel Pellegrini may decide to keep his current system with James Milner playing as a false striker ahead of Navas, Nasri and Silva. Captain Vincent Kompany is also likely to miss out with a hamstring problem as well as Matija Nastasic who has a muscle injury.
Matthew Taylor and Michael Duff are missing with calf injuries and are likely to make their returns sometimes in January. Stephen Ward is also out for an indefinite period with an ankle injury sustained a couple of months ago.
- In the last seven meetings between the two sides, there has been 37 goals.
- Man City are unbeaten and have won eight of the last 12 meetings against Burnley
- Under Manuel Pellegrini, Man City have won 23 of their 27 home games.
- In those 27 games, Man City have only conceded 18 goals
- Burnley have only kept one clean sheet in seven Premier League away games
- Burnley have also conceded at least two goals in 21 of those away matches
- In their two stints in the Premier League, Burnley have only picked up 9 points out of a possible 81 away from home.
Recent Head to Heads
2009/2010 Sat 03 Apr Burnley 1 – 6 Man. City
2009/2010 Sat 07 Nov Man. City 3 – 3 Burnley
2001/2002 Sat 29 Dec Man. City 5 – 1 Burnley
2001/2002 Mon 27 Aug Burnley 2 – 4 Man. City
Man City: Yaya Toure
After a tough start to the season it now seems as though Yaya Toure is starting to get back his incredible form of last season, which was a pivotal part of Man City being crowned champions. He has being one of the crucial figures for Man City’s impressive form recently and has managed five goals in his last seven games making it six in the league so far this season. Yaya Toure also has a great ability to be able to burst past players and provide extra attacking threat with 76% of his 33 attempted dribbles being successful. As well as providing an extra attacking presence, he also has a superb range of accurate passing with 90% of his 1435 passes being accurate.
Burnley: George Boyd
In order for Burnley to have a chance of avoiding relegation this season, more players will have to start to step up and score and provide more goals. One of those players who needs to start scoring more is George Boyd who has settled in well since joining in the summer but not really found the net much with only two goals this season. Just like Yaya Toure he has the ability to drive past players with 53% of his 32 attempted dribbles being successful but it is whether he can start to find a better end product. He has also shown that he does offer creativity to this side with 16 chances created, contributing in one assist.
A nailed on home banker for me here with City looking increasingly better as the season has gone on. Burnley will do extremely well to get anything out of this game but I can only see a comfortable home win.
My Prediction – Man City 4-0 Burnley