Last time we saw Burnley, a couple seasons ago, they were still defined by (the final death throes of) the decade-long Sean Dyche era, with the likes of Ashley Barnes and Phil Bardsley still setting the tone, and their studs in oppositions’ shins. The Premier League would be mercifully freed from Dyche-ball and by the end of that season (if only for eight months), presumably with the Clarets never to be seen again at the top level.
But then a most remarkable transformation (in fortunes and in style) under new ownership (American investment firm ALK Capital, and then later including minority investors JJ Watt and Dude Perfect) and new coaching (Manchester City and Belgium legend Vincent Kompany) saw Burnley run the Championship table in perhaps the most dominant season in that division’s history, securing promotion with seven (7!) matches to spare.
Their time back in the Premier League has been a bit less smooth, with just one win and four points so far, which sees them sit third from the bottom as the division’s (joint-) second-lowest scoring team (yes, even worse than us!) and second-worst defense. But they did beat fellow newcomers Luton Town last weekend and are surely due for a win at Turf Moor, too (having gone winless at home so far), so we’ll have to be extra careful to not fall into the literal trap of this trap game after a good recent run.
Date / Time: Saturday, October 7, 2023, 15.00 BST; 10am EDT; 7:30pm IST
Venue: Turf Moor, Burnley, England
Referee: Stuart Attwell (on pitch); Darren Bond (VAR)
Forecast: Breezy and fairly warm, and maybe even dry!
On TV: none (UK); none (USA); Star Sports Select HD2 (India); NTA Sports 24, SuperSport Blitz (NGA); elsewhere
Streaming: none (UK); Peacock (USA); Hotstar (India); SuperSport GOtv (NGA)
Burnley team news: While Burnley failed to convince Ian Maatsen to return to them on a permanent basis (and a club-record fee) after being a key part of their promotion campaign while on loan, they did add nearly £100m-worth of talent to the team, including the likes of Aaron Ramsey, Nathan Redmond, and Sander Berge.
January arrival Lyle Foster leads the team in scoring with three (3) while fellow Belgian league export Ameen Al-Dakhli anchors the backline along with new arrival Jordan Beyer (from Gladbach). Perhaps when all these new parts start clicking, their fortunes will improve (see also: Chelsea).
Burnley will be without both Ramsey and Redmond however, who join Jóhann Berg Gudmundsson, Manuel Benson, Hjalmar Ekdal, and Michael Obafemi on the sidelines.
Chelsea team news: Having won back-to-back games, the mood has improved and the long-term goals and plans are a bit easier to see. But it’s still a precarious situation, and we need to build on that momentum, especially against teams at the wrong end of the table (lest we ourselves join them there in the end).
We even have some non-tragic injury news, with Mykhailo Mudryk, Armando Broja, and Moisés Caicedo all avoiding major problems despite being forced to come off early in Monday’s 2-0 win at Craven Cottage. Meanwhile, youngster Carney Chukwuemeka could be ready to return after nearly two months out. And the situation could get even better after the international break, with Reece James getting ready to lace them up once again.
Fellow right back Malo Gusto is still out however, serving the final match of his three-game ban (so Marc Cucurella is likely to deputize once again). But Nicolas Jackson is once again available after serving his one-match ban on Monday.
Previously: Chelsea have won 8 of the last 9 meetings between the two teams, including the last five at Turf Moor by an average margin of nearly three goals. Last time we ran out 4-0 winners, with all four goals coming in the second half.