Date: 30th January 2009 at 8:20pm
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The Clarets suffered their fifth consecutive defeat in the League in midweek going down 3-0 to struggling club, Watford at Vicarage Road. We now have an ideal opportunity to reverse that trend with a relatively easy game on paper against bottom club, Charlton Athletic at Turf Moor.

We simply have to win this game if we are to get our promotion challenge back on track. Thanks to Cardiff winning in midweek, it will not be possible to get back in the Top 6 even if we beat Charlton 10-0. We are currently in 9th place, four points behind 6th placed Preston. It is crucial though we get three points to stay in contention with the chasing pack.

Are there any easy games though in the Championship? Our record against bottom clubs this season has been abysmal and in typical fashion Charlton have just won their first match in 19 league games, with Matthew Spring getting the goal in midweek to defeat local rivals, Palace1-0.

So yet another struggling team will have their tails up as they face the Clarets!

Don’t for heavens sake mess this one up Burnley!!

Predicted Team Sheet

The nightmare for Owen Coyle could be defence. He has made it plain he would rather play Alexander in the holding midfield role but recently thanks to injuries and/or suspensions in the back four this has not been possible and the owd lad has more often than not had to bomb up and down the right flank in the right back position.

There are currently injury concerns surrounding Jordan, Duff and Kalvenes. Coyle said recently:

‘Michael (Duff) we’re more hopeful of than Stephen (Jordan), but Christian (Kalvenes) won’t train today (Thursday) after taking a knock at Watford.’

The news today is that we have also signed defender, Rhys Williams on loan from Middlesbrough, with the strong possibility he will play tomorrow. The trouble is he can play anywhere in the back four and even in holding midfield so try and predict the team now?

Coyle slated the defence after the 3-0 Watford defeat even saying he may have to play one of the kids in the back four (although god knows who!) if not himself (joke!). I suspect at least one of the three doubtful will make it and Duff looks the most likely. The problem would appear to be if neither Jordan nor Kalvenes are fit at left back. Alexander has played there on occasion but again I think we have to hope Kalvenes makes it unless Williams can slot in there.

I will stick my neck out and predict both Duff and Kalvenes makes it allowing Alexander to play the holding midfield role with Carlisle the major culprit on Tuesday night bench warming again.

Let`s try this line up:

Jensen, Williams, Duff, Caldwell, Kalvenes, Alexander, Elliott, McCann, Eagles, Blake, Paterson

Subs: Penny, Carlisle, Gudjonsson, Rodriguez, Thompson

Burnley Team News:

It`s all said above! I think!!

Player to watch: Rhys Williams

It`s all eyes on the new boy than!

The loan defender is expected to play tomorrow having signed on time today.

Gawd knows where he will play though, depends on who recovers from injury along the back four with Duff. Jordan and Kalvenes all having problems! He might even get a go in the holding midfield role!

Charlton Athletic Team News:

Charlton have just signed Leeds striker Tresor Kandol and Wolves defender Darren Ward on loan with both expected to make their debuts against the Clarets. Charlton however will be without a recognised centre-back because Jonathan Fortune (Achilles) and skipper Mark Hudson (hip) are out.

Graeme Murty (shin) is also doubtful although keeper Nicky Weaver and Darren Ambrose appear to have recovered.

Some reports also suggest that Andy Gray will be out for the rest of the season so I dare say Clarets fans will be really sorry about that!

Player to watch: Tresor Kandol

The 27 year old Zaire-born, DR Congo International was making a name for himself at Leeds after signing from Barnet, originally on loan. However he joined Millwall on loan in August 2008 where he has since notched up 8 goals in 22 matches. On 28th January this year Kandol’s loan at Millwall expired so he returned to Leeds United . He was soon shipped out again though two days later joining the Addicks on loan until May 3rd 2009.

Last Time We Met

A stunning goal by Elliott against Charlton at Turf Moor back in March 2008 was enough to secure all three points in a 1-0 victory. That result ensured we completed the double over the Addicks last season defeating them 3-1 away in December 2007.

We played out a 1-1 draw against Charlton this season away from home in October last year, Thompson getting the goal.

Ref Watch:

Oh no,it’s the Beeby!!RJ Beeby(Northamptonshire).

Match Prediction:

Should be at least 3-0 but then we are the Clarets and we have to hope the leaky defence is bolstered by the arrival of Rhys Williams.

Next Match

It`s the FA Cup 4th Round replay on Tuesday night (3rd Feb) with WBA the visitors to Turf Moor. If we win we will face either Cardiff or Arsenal away in the 5th round depending on their 4th round replay result on Wednesday night. The next Championship game is against Birmingham City away, in a tough battle at St Andrews on Saturday 7th February (3pm KO)