Friday, 8 November 2013

Is there a way to stop Burnley?

This weeks game couldn't be much harder for the Cherries. The away trip to Burnley is one to savour with Eddie Howe and Jason Tindall making their way back up north to their former Championship club. But this will not be a too friendly an encounter. Both sides will be revved up for this game as one they have to win. Burnley go in to the game on a 10 match unbeaten run which is great consistency, although they have started to see teams giving them close games of late with Millwall the latest team to prevent them from taking all three points in their last game.

So how can you stop Burnley from playing? AFCB are going to find it tough going make no mistake about that. Burnley aren't top of the table for nothing and the first concern must be to try and frustrate their powerful forward game. Bournemouth need to have an out ball that gives them a threat and we have that in the pace of Grabban and Rantie which served AFCB so well in the Middlesbrough away fixture. If the Cherries can give Burnley something to think about when they break, Burnley might not be so cavalier in their efforts to throw everyone forward on each attack.

Burnley are resilient at the back with Trippier, Duff, Schackell and Mee keeping the door firmly shut on many Championship teams, while Ings and Vokes have been banging in the goals at the other end. Marney and Arfield have also been getting good reports in midfield and looking for a weakness is pretty hard in this team. The only points that Burnley have dropped at home were draws against Bolton and Blackburn Rovers, but they are unbeaten at home. The good news is that records are there to be broken though and there is pressure on Burnley to keep the run going. By the way, I have been told that AFCB have never won at Turf Moor.

Burnley managed to come back from two-nil down in their last game so that will of felt as good as a win for them. Sean Dyche admitted they did not play well in the first hour but I can't see them sitting back at Turf Moor. The last team they beat at home was QPR and they managed that with some room to spare. If Bournemouth can stop Burnley it will be a game that will be carefully studied by the other managers in the Championship, because they have dumbfounded everyone so far with their explosive play and string strike force. 

It will be key how Eddie sets the team up. I suspect he might play one up front but as well believe Ritchie, Coulibaly and possibly Fraser are not match fit, Grabban could be moved to the right wing and that would either mean Rantie playing as the loan striker or he could fancy Pitman or Thomas in that role. The latter would be a surprise, but Wes Thomas can play that role well in holding up the ball and he is quicker than Pitman.

If Eddie then goes five in midfield we could see Surman, Hughes or O'Kane come into the team. Meanwhile, at the back  I expect Ward to come back in for Elphick. The good thing is that Eddie has options and he could set up the team to be defensive or offensive and there should be quite a bit of competition for places. There is something that tells me that Jason and Eddie might well have a special game plan for this match and AFCB might spring a surprise or two in their line up.

Over to you Eddie Howe, show us how you come away with points from Turf Moor. 

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