AccyClaret discusses our next game at home to Plymouth and provides his match preview:
The first home league game of 2008 comes 6 days after Burnley`s heroic performance against Arsenal on Sunday, where skill, endeavour and a ‘never say die’ attitude almost prevailed.
There were many ‘what if`s’ and a few ‘how comes’ but a blazing game was had and a 2-0 defeat somewhat flattered the visitors. We even got praised by Arsene Wenger! Now we must have done something right.
I personally think we used the wingers to maximum effect with Wade Elliot winning the battle against Traore all afternoon. What a different game it could have been if Lafferty buried his header on 6 minutes and then wasn`t sent off after 60 minutes. All the players, the manager and the coaching staff can take some solace in a tantalising performance.
That game though is now resigned to the history books and with Plymouth Argyle making the long journey north, is this going to be the game where we carry the momentum we showed on Sunday and turn it into our first win since October 23rd 2007?
If the players put in the same work rate, effort and skill as they did on Sunday then anything but a Burnley victory won`t suffice.
Plymouth are currently 5 places and 4 points above us sitting in 7th place and with 8 points over the Christmas fixtures, they are in excellent form and will be relishing the chance to come to Turf Moor but may be surprised to find a newly invigorated Burnley.
The 2 sides have met 22 times in the league at the Turf, with Plymouth only winning 4 times, Burnley have won 12 and there have been 6 draws.
The last time Argyle won at the Turf was in 1977 in the old 2nd Division.
Of the last 6 encounters in the league, Plymouth have only taken 1 point from those games, with us winning at Home Park for the last 3 seasons.
Over the last 14 years Burnley and Plymouth have met in some rather different circumstances. In 1994 it was a 2 legged play off tie, with a 0-0 draw at the Turf we went down to Home Park and won 3-1 and subsequently beat Stockport County 2-1 in the play off final at Wembley and got promoted to Division 1.
The next game of real importance came on the 2nd May 1998 what was then the 2nd Division, it was a straight battle for survival, if Burnley won we stayed up, lose and we would be back in the basement of the football league. Luckily we won 2-1 that day and condemned Plymouth to relegation, some ugly scenes followed the game at Turf Moor as our fans celebrated and taunted the travelling fans in the Cricket Field stand. So I would suppose that even now after 9 years it was a day they won`t have forgotten and may still carry a bit of resentment.
Saturday`s game is going to be a test of Burnley`s character, it`s not going to be easy with a team in such good form coming to the Turf.
Unfortunately Kyle Lafferty is now suspended for 4 games, David Unsworth should return to the starting 11 after his suspension and Clarke Carlisle looks a doubt so Stanislav Varga could get his league debut on Saturday maybe coming on as a substitute. Although if Unsworth is unavailable Varga could start the game.
So the likely Burnley line up is:
Kiraly, Alexander, Unsworth, Caldwell, Harley, J O`Connor, McCann, Gudjonsson, Elliot, Blake, Gray.
Subs: Jensen, Varga, Jordon, Jones, Akinbiyi
Plymouth Argyle may line up like this:
McCormick, Connolly, Doumbe, Seip, Hodges, Summerfield, Abdou, Nalis, Halmosi, Easter, Ebanks-Blake.
Subs: Larrieu, Fallon, Chadwick, Sawyer, Jutkiewicz.
Let`s make it at least another 30 years until they get a result.
It`s now time to forget last years home form and start 2008 brightly and return Turf Moor back to its old self as a fortress that teams fear visiting!!
Many thanks to AccyClaret for his match preview and if anybody else would like to have a go then please contact the Site Editor or raise in our forums
Watch this space!
Burnley Team News:
Gudjonsson and Spicer completed their suspensions in time for Arsenal so are available again. Lafferty is now out on a four-match ban after his sending off on Sunday. Injury doubts remain for Clarke Carlisle and Alan Mahon
Player to watch: Andy Gary
Assuming he has not been transferred to Charlton, its time our number one scorer,scored and added to his 13 goal tally for the season
Plymouth Argyle Team News:
Not yet in. Will David ‘Chuck’ Norris still be on their books or will Ipswich have got their man? He missed their last game with a stomach bug too. They have also seen the departures of Dan Gosling, Barry Hayles and Akos Buszaky.
Player to watch: Peter Halmosi
The midfielder was inspirational in Plymouth’s 3-2 defeat of Hull in their last game
Last Time We Met
AccyClaret adequately reviews some of our past performances against Plymouth above and a special mention goes to last seasons fixture at Turf Moor, when we finally broke our 19 game winless run to thump the Pilgrims 4-0 with Duff, Jones, McVeigh and Ellott scoring for the Clarets
I am going for a 3-0 thumping, it has to happen sometime and Plymouth are good at being the fall-guys
Its Coventry City away at the Ricoh on Saturday January 19th with a 3pm KO. I wonder if Paul Fletcher will be going?