Vital Football

Latest Burnley FC News

Eagles Perched to Swoop?

Eagles Perched to Swoop?

When Clarets fans saw Chris Eagles proudly hold up his Number 33 Burnley shirt after signing from Manchester United, how many thought they would see the former Premier League player for the Premier League Champions struggle to get a starting eleven place?

It maybe hasn`t quite worked out the way it was planned. Our poor start led to ridiculous accusations that Eagles flattered to deceive and even more bizarrely had an unsettling influence on the players around him struggling with the new formation. Elliott in particular admittedly looked lost for a time.

I think there lies the problem. Eagles is such a good player that it took some time for his team mates to keep up with him and reach an understanding.

It was just starting to happen for Eagles when he foolishly lost the plot and was red carded for dissent against Plymouth at home. His three match ban coincided with an improvement in form by the Clarets as the 4-1-4-1 formation without Eagles began to pay dividends as we embarked on a nine game stretch without defeat.

Chris Eagles has been on the bench in each of the matches he has been available after returning from suspension. He has come on each time and been influential in all the games, in most cases assisting and/or scoring.

Owen Coyle had quite rightly stuck with the same starting eleven for the last three matches before we faced Reading and with the Clarets undefeated in nine games and winning their last three matches, it was no surprise when Coyle choose the same sixteen again with Eagles once more named on the bench.

The run however is over after losing to Reading with some of the players looking jaded and I don`t think we can now afford not to name the former Manchester United player in our starting eleven.

Yesterday against Reading, he came on from the bench and he immediately livened things up. You could see the grit and passion ooze out of him whilst looking determined to earn himself a starting eleven place in the next game by impressing the gaffer. According to most Burnley fans at the game, he easily earned the Clarets Man of the Match Award despite only playing from the 56th minute!

Eagles must surely start in our next match after the two week International break.

Birmingham at home will be a tough test and we need someone who is fired up and has some Premier League experience to play against the current Championship leaders newly relegated last season from the top flight.

The question is who would we drop? The midfield had a bad day against Reading, notably Chris McCann despite his late consolation goal. Joey Gudjonsson also had an average game. It will be interesting to see if one of those makes way for Eagles in the next game. It would be a tad harsh though as both players will be refreshed after the two week break and their form could return with both midfielders having impressed in September. Joey Gudjonsson's impressive performances throughout September have earned him a nomination in the Coca Cola Championship Player of the Month awards. Chris McCann, on the other hand is maturing by the second and has also improved consistently having been named Man of the Match numerous times this season.

Should they be penalised just for one poor performance against Reading?

Another option could be to drop Thompson,. Our new striker too has been impressive in some of the recent matches although he has yet to score and he has struggled in the last two games against Watford and Reading.

I think the option to drop Thompson for Eagles but keep him on the bench is the better one rather than tinker around with the midfield.

With Jordan now suspended for the Brum game after his second yellow card sending off in the last few seconds of the Reading match maybe it is time to revert back to 4-4-2.

We tried this in the second half against Reading after Eagles came on for Duff with Alexander reverting back to the right back position and we didn`t fare too badly

My team selection for the Birmingham game would be as follows:

Jensen, Alexander, Carlisle, Caldwell, Kalvenes (if fit), Elliott, Gudjonsson, McCann, Eagles, Paterson, Blake

Subs: Penny, Duff, Thompson, Rodriguez, Mahon

Whatever happens, there is one plea I must make to Owen Coyle-Please let the Eagles Swoop for the full 90 minutes!

Vital Burnley wish to thank Burnley FC for the use of the photograph above

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Date:Sunday October 5 2008
Time: 1:58PM


Anybody agree or disagree? Eagles must surely start now
05/10/2008 14:12:00
You may well be right Phil - but I am not sure I like the look of your midfield. If Alexande is being moved from the holding role, do we need to look at putting VDS in ( assuming fit)? We may even see a new right back arrive on loan during the next weeks?
05/10/2008 21:38:00
We simply have too many midfielders all playing pretty well at the moment. I think the main thing though is that Eagles has to start, so if we opt for 4-1-4-1, I can live with Jensen, Duff, Carlisle, Caldwell, Kalvenes, Alexander,Elliott, Gudjonsson, McCann, Eagles, Paterson. We probably need to be more defence minded against the likes of Birmingham and hope we can score on the break with just the one up front. Thompson,Blake and Rodriguez on bench would give us attacking options should we need Plan B. I get the feeling though that Eagles seems more suited to 4-4-2
06/10/2008 07:42:00
Page 1/1
  1. 1

Login to post a comment

Recent Burnley Articles

Vital Pre-Match - Premier League, 29th-31st Oct

The 2016-17 season continues with the latest round of matches this weekend, which will see us among those having a match in this upcoming schedule with three-points the aim of course.

Defour Touch And Go For Manchester United

Dyche has confirmed Boyd and Ward will be fit for the match at Manchester United on Saturday but Stevn Defour is 'touch and go.' We'll also have Gray back too.

Chelsea Loanee Bamford Confident Goals Will Come

Bamford has scored goals at lower levels with MK Dons, Derby & Middlesbrough but the Chelsea striker, on loan with Burnley for the season, hasn't managed one in the Premier League.

Match Day Officials v Manchester United (29/10/16)

The Premier League have now announced the Match Day officials that will take charge of the game against Manchester United this Saturday.

Archived Vital Burnley Articles

Vital Burnley articles from

Site Journalists

Editor email
Paul 8c8
no email

Current Poll (see more polls)

Manchester United v Burnley
Suggested By:
Burnley win0%
Manchester United win0%
ScoopDragon Premier League Network Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Man City 9 6 2 1 20 11
2 Arsenal 9 6 2 1 20 10
3 Liverpool 9 6 2 1 20 9
4 Chelsea 9 6 1 2 19 10
5 Spurs 9 5 4 0 19 9
6 Everton 9 4 3 2 15 5
7 Man Utd 9 4 2 3 14 1
8 Southampton 9 3 4 2 13 3
9 Watford 9 3 3 3 12 0
10 AFC Bournemouth 9 3 3 3 12 0
11 Crystal Palace 9 3 2 4 11 0
12 Leicester City 9 3 2 4 11 -4
13 WBA 9 2 4 3 10 0
14 Burnley 9 3 1 5 10 -5
15 West Ham 9 3 1 5 10 -7
16 Stoke 9 2 3 4 9 -7
17 Middlesbrough 9 1 4 4 7 -4
18 Hull City 9 2 1 6 7 -14
19 Swansea 9 1 2 6 5 -7
20 Sunderland 9 0 2 7 2 -10
The Vital Football Members League
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News
Vital Football Comment

Recent Burnley Results (view all)

Burnley Fixtures (view all)

Oct 29 2016 3:00PM : Manchester United (a)
Barclays Premier League
Nov 5 2016 3:00PM : Crystal Palace (H)
Barclays Premier League
Nov 21 2016 8:00PM : West Bromwich Albion (a)
Barclays Premier League
Nov 26 2016 12:30PM : Manchester City (H)
Barclays Premier League
Dec 3 2016 3:00PM : Stoke City (a)
Barclays Premier League
Dec 10 2016 3:00PM : AFC Bournemouth (H)
Barclays Premier League

Vital Members League Table

3.Grimsby Claret1
Write for Vital Football