THE Premier League continues this Saturday as Burnley welcome Manchester City to Turf Moor. Ben Levene (@BenLevene96) shares his best bets.
Burnley v Man City| Saturday 3rd February 2018, 12:30 | Sky Sports
After a remarkable start to the season, things have not quite gone Burnley’s way of late. 1-0 wins have turned into 1-0 losses, and the Clarets are now eight league games without a win.
That being said, they are still keeping things tight and remaining competitive in games. Only Spurs and Man City have beaten Sean Dyche’s side by more than the single goal this season.
They’ve conceded in the first-half just once in their last eight at Turf Moor, holding out until the second-half when hosting Arsenal, Liverpool and United. If anything, they’ve upped their game when facing better sides this season, with the nature of the games suiting their style.
The potential return of James Tarkowski will prove a boost to Dyche, the former Oldham man was at the heart of some heroic defensive displays in the first-half of the campaign.
Pep Guardiola’s side may have to be patient, especially given the possibility that they’re without both David Silva and Leroy Sane.
City have scored before the 25th minute in just two of their 12 away games in the league this season. In both meetings between the sides this season, Burnley have held out beyond this mark. City don’t force the issue, they back themselves over the course of 90 minutes to find openings.
We know that Burnley will aim to frustrate and soak up pressure. They’ll be direct when going forwards too.
However, they’ve lost three of four home games against the big six ‘to nil’, with seven of their eight losses this season seeing them fail to score. Conversely, Man City have won five of nine visits to non-top six opposition without reply, and have kept three clean sheets in their last four on the road.
De Bruyne to shine
Interestingly, each of the last three times a Man City player has won the Man of the Match award live on Sky, it's been Kevin De Bruyne. Those games were away at Bristol City, Newcastle and Manchester United.
De Bruyne has three goals in his last three games, and in the absence of Silva and Sane, there will be a reliance on him to produce. He's provided 11 assists this season, more than any other player, with the absent Silva and Sane being City's other most creative players with eight and 10 assists respectively. Should the goals flow, he'd likely be at the heart of it.
The odds imply there's just a 20% chance he scoops up the award yet again. That offers us a fair bit of value.
Burnley v Manchester City – First goal after 25th Minute (1/1 Paddy Power)
Burnley v Manchester City – Kevin De Bruyne to be Man of the Match (4/1 William Hill)