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Burnley vs. Liverpool

Turf Moor

Sunday 25th April 2010

3pm

Liverpool or Bust for Burnley

The Clarets face Liverpool at Turf Moor this Sunday in the penultimate home game of the season. A defeat and it could be all over for the Clarets. Burnley are currently second from bottom just one point behind Hull but crucially four points behind West Ham in 17th. All three clubs have now played the same number of games following Hull`s 2-0 home defeat to Villa in midweek and have each just three games of the season remaining.

We could be relegated back down to the Championship after just one season in the Premier League if West Ham win their game against Wigan at Upton Park today and we lose or draw tomorrow.

I will leave it to Brian Laws to sum up the importance of this game. Although perhaps stating the blindingly obvious he said this week:

"It`s all or nothing! There is no room for error. The pressure will definitely be on after (today`s) results because it will tell us exactly what we`ve got to do. There might not be another bite of the cherry. This is the big weekend for us. "

Yes, it bloody is so come on you Clarets; let`s have some passion and fight. Thirty three years it has taken to get back in the top flight so don`t give up just yet no matter what West Ham achieve today!

Predicted Team Sheet

Chris Eagles standing in for the injured Nugent last Saturday against Sunderland at the Stadium of Light had a very poor game on the wing. I suspect Laws might be tempted to drop him back down to the bench if Nugent has recovered from his hamstring injury.

I have some concerns about playing our recognised strikers in a wider role and Paterson last week was totally ineffective down the flank and was substituted at half-time. There is a case perhaps for playing Thompson up front. He has looked quite effective in recent games coming on from the bench but he might not have done enough to secure a starting eleven place.

It will also be interesting to see if Brian Laws is tempted to include Kevin McDonald in the eighteen. He has not featured since being fined for his naughty boy antics during the Manchester City game after being substituted and bombing off down the pub at half-time. McDonald is certainly keen to return to action in the first team and featured in the second string 2-2 draw against Wigan Reserves in midweek

I expect though that Laws will not make too many changes to the eighteen that lost 2-1 to Sunderland last Saturday and will predict the following:

Jensen, Mears, Duff, Cort, Fox, Alexander, Elliott, Cork, Paterson, Fletcher, Nugent

Subs: Weaver, Jordan, Caldwell, Bikey or McDonald, Blake, Eagles, Thompson

Burnley Team News:

Chris McCann is making good progress after his operation to repair his cartilage. The club are still hopeful he could make an appearance before the end of the season but the Liverpool game comes too early.

One player who also looks likely to miss out is Clarke Carlisle. He went over on his ankle in training this week and is currently under treatment but Laws believes he is doubtful for the Liverpool game.

David Nugent picked up a tight hamstring last week and missed the game at the Stadium of Light. He is believed to back in full training today (Saturday) though and should be fit to play tomorrow.

Player to watch: Steven Fletcher

We simply have to score goals in this game if we are to survive the drop. All eyes therefore will be on our top scorer, Steven Fletcher and there will be no room for fluffing any chances in this game. Fletcher sometimes can`t seem to hit a barn door from five yards and other times can be breathtaking and effective in front of goal. We have to hope the latter player turns up on Sunday!

Fletcher`s form does not appear to have been as good since he broke a bone in his hand although he did score in our last game at Turf Moor albeit a consolation goal in the 6-1 drubbing by Manchester City. That goal was his tenth this season and we need to ensure he adds to that tally on Sunday.

Liverpool Team News:

Their leading goal-scorer Fernando Torres has been ruled out for the rest of the season after a knee operation.

Liverpool`s resources up front have been further stretched after David Ngog complained of a back problem in their Europa League defeat by Atletico Madrid in midweek. The 21-year-old Frenchman was substituted in the second half as a precaution and may not be fit enough to play against the Clarets. Dirk Kuyt could play as a striker if Ngog is ruled out.

Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez also has a number of defenders injured. Emiliano Insua (thigh muscle strain), Fabio Aurelio (thigh), Martin Skrtel (ankle) and Martin Kelly (cartilage) are all still sidelined.

Maxi Rodriguez though is available in midfield after being ineligible to play in Europe.

Player to watch: Yossi Benayoun

Yossi Benayoun completed a 5 million move from West Ham to Liverpool in July 2007 after signing a four-year contract.

The Clarets already know to their cost the threat posed by the 29 year old Israeli international winger and attacking midfielder. He scored his first Premier League hat-trick for Liverpool in a 4-0 win against Burnley in the match at Anfield this season back in September last year.

Back to the Future

The last time we beat Liverpool at Turf Moor was a memorable FA Cup third round clash on the night of 18th January 2005. Rafa Benitez underestimated Steve Cotterill`s men and decided to field a weakened team. The only player still remaining from either of the sides that played that night is Brian Jensen and he looks likely to play against them again this Sunday.

The Clarets team that night was as follows:

Jensen, Sinclair, Cahill, McGreal, Camara, Hyde, Grant, Roche, Chaplow, Valois, Moore

The game will be remembered for a comical own goal by Djimi Traore in the 51st minute, the only goal of the game that gave the Clarets a 1-0 victory

We have not beaten Liverpool at Turf Moor in a League game since December 1973. On Boxing Day 1973 in front of a crowd of 24,000 we beat Liverpool 2-1. Paul Fletcher scored after just 3 minutes of play before they equalised in the 84th minute. They must have thought they had done enough to earn a point before Hankin popped up to score a minute later and secure both points.

In 1975-76, the year we were relegated from the top flight never to return for another 33 years, not only did we play them in the league but also knocked them out of the League Cup.

We drew 1-1 at Anfield and in the third-round replay at Turf Moor on the Tuesday night of 14th October 1975 came out winners 1-0 in front of a 20,022 crowd. Peter Noble scored from the spot in the 44th minute and indeed a week earlier also scored in the game at Anfield after 48 minutes. Liverpool had been runners-up the season before and were destined to be Champions by the end of the 1975-76 season so this was no mean achievement although we were lucky to win. Jimmy Adamson in his programme notes said of the match 'We did not play well by any stretch of the imagination and were lucky to win but this only balanced up some bad fortune on two or three recent occasions'

The league match against Liverpool in that season at Turf Moor took place on Saturday December 6th 1975 just a few weeks before Adamson resigned to be replaced by Joe Brown. The game played in front of an 18425 crowd finished 0-0 and that day we lined up as follows:

Peyton, Scott, Newton, Ingham, Waldron, Thomson, Summerbee, Kennerley, Hankin, Flynn, Bradshaw .Sub: Loggie (Did not get on!)

In the return leg at Anfield, played in front of 36708 fans on Saturday 27th March 1976, we lost 2-0. Our team that night was:

Peyton, Docherty, Newton, Noble, Waldron, Rodaway, Morley, Flynn, Hankin, Fletcher, Summerbee. Sub: Ingham (Did not get on!)

It would also prove to be Colin Waldron`s last game for the club. He was given a free transfer at the end of the season and joined Manchester United.

Clarets fans will instantly want to forget our last game against Liverpool. That was earlier this season in the Premier League clash at Anfield last September. We were completely outplayed and lost 4-0 with Yossi Benayoun getting a hat-trick (his third of his Liverpool career and first in the Premier League). Benayoun opened the scoring after 27 minutes with Kuyt getting the second of their goals four minutes before the end of the first half. They led 2-0 at half-time before Benayoun got a couple more goals in the second half after 61 and 82 minutes to complete a miserable day for the travelling faithful.

Ref Watch:

West Yorkshire referee, Martin Atkinson will take charge of this one Atkinson was appointed to the Select Group Referees list in 2005. A year later, in 2006, he was appointed to the FIFA International Referees list Clarets fans will be hoping this is a good omen considering he was the referee in our recent game away to Hull City although I am not sure we could expect to beat Liverpool 4-1 as well! This will be the fourth time he has been in charge of a Clarets league match this season with the other three all away games. As well as Hull he was also referee in our games at Molineux and the Reebok.

Match Prediction:

The Clarets could go into this game knowing that if they don`t win they are relegated. If West Ham beat Wigan in the Saturday game at Upton Park only a Burnley win against Liverpool would keep our survival hopes alive. A win for the Hammers would put them seven points clear and with their vastly superior goal difference a draw or defeat against Liverpool would mean curtains for the Clarets with just two games to play and six points available. There will be pressure on the Clarets in this game no matter what the score at Upton Park and so many times lately we have talked about 'must-win` games and last chance saloon. They all pale into insignificance compared to this one. Liverpool affected by the Iceland volcano and grounding of aircraft had a gruelling 1,200-mile journey by land across Europe in midweek for their Europa League semi-final first-leg against Atletico Madrid. They also lost the match 1-0 so could be both mentally and physically drained for our clash on Sunday. They will also be without their talisman, leading goal scorer, Torres who is out injured for the rest of the season. Rafael Benitez`s men have had an inconsistent and disappointing season by their standards. They are currently in 7th spot already 5 points behind Tottenham in the coveted 4th place having played a game more. Although they are still mathematically in with a chance of finishing 4th, they must clearly know their chances are slim and hopefully that will pray on their mind at Turf Moor. The Clarets will also be hoping to take advantage of Liverpool`s recent poor away form , Liverpool have not won now in their last seven away league matches and are still looking for their first win on the road in 2010. Let`s face it; despite all the above facts and stats, this will still be a very, very hard game for the Clarets. The difference in depth of quality between the two sides on paper is breathtaking. We have to hope the right team turns up with the right mental attitude and passion. It will certainly be curtains if there is any repeat of the performance we put in our last two home games at Turf Moor against Rovers and City. The Clarets have to dig deep once again and somehow find that 'Fortress Turf Moor` spirit that has deserted them in recent times. Come on let`s do it! 2-1 Clarets!!

Next Match

Our last away game of the season will be a trip to St Andrews to play Birmingham on Saturday 1st May. The match will now be televised live by Sky Sports with the scheduled kick-off changed from 3pm to 12:45pm. All Clarets fans will be hoping our battle to avoid relegation will still be on.




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The Journalist

Writer: turfmanphil Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Saturday April 24 2010

Time: 10:55AM

Your Comments

I dont care what anyone says, it we are down tomorrow it will hurt like hell and you can stick life in the Championship it will never be the same for me until ,despite all its faults we return to the top flight. Of course I will support them in whatever league we are in but that is not the point. Burnley Are Back..In the Championship just won't have the same ring about it
turfmanphil
OK, I'm not a Burnley fan but it would be great if you could stay up. There has often been a great escape with somebody else (hopefully West Ham) falling away at the end. Let's face it, it doesn't really matter whether you (the supporters) believe it's possible. If things go badly enough for West Ham you may stay up by winning your 2 home games. Let's hope so. Come on Burnley!
Bristol White
If the very ordinary Liverpool side turn up (and they can be ordinary), and we play to the best of our abilities like we used to, then we've got a chance albeit a slim one. As Greavsie said, it's a funny old game', and anything is possible. I just hope we play well and nick this one. C'mon the Clarets.
WelshClaret
The task is now clear! A win or we are down! West Ham beat Wigan 3-2 at home and we are now 7 points behind them. Hull lose 1-0 at home to Sunderland and are effectively down on goal difference even if they win last two games
turfmanphil
Come on Burnley. The fans will play their part. What we need now is three out of three, unlikely? yes, but let's go in a blaze of glory. Laws has to pick the team which will play their hearts out, never mind theories or form. Please, please, please, give the fans something for their undying support through the season.
cornwallclaret
Line-ups:Burnley: Jensen; Mears, Duff, Cort, Fox; Paterson, Alexander, Cork, Elliott; Nugent, Fletcher. Subs: Thompson, Bikey, Caldwell, Blake, Eagles, Rodriguez, Weaver. Liverpool: Reina; Johnson, Carragher, Agger, Ayala; Babel, Mascherano, Gerrard, Aquilani, Rodriguez; Kuyt. Subs: Cavalieri, Benayoun, Kyrgiakos, Lucas, Degen, El Zhar, Pacheco.
8clarets8
I know I have banged on about being at work for this game, but heres hoping the one match I do miss through work is one hell of a cracker and we get the points, it will have been worth missing if it means we arn't relegated today.
sheclaret
Half-time then Burnley 0-0 Liverpool, some great play from Burnley but we need to score UTC!!
8clarets8
Damn Gerrard scores for Liverpool against the run of play, Burnley 0-1 Liverpool.
8clarets8
Gerrard scores again :-( Burnley 0-2 Liverpool
8clarets8
Liverpool score again Burnley 0-3 Liverpool, the dream is over :-(
8clarets8
3-0 Liverpool. Goodbye and good riddance.
spurdontogreatness
four - hahahahahaha. Was really glad to see you guys come up last season but seeing the way some of your fans have behaved this year I'll be glad to see the back of you. Let's hope you drop straight through to the 1st division.
spurdontogreatness
Cheers for you need too get that off your chest fella?
8clarets8
Full-time Burnley relegated, Burnley 0-4 Liverpool in the end, come on think of a positive hmm we are possibly only two games away from playing in Europe?
8clarets8
Thanks for your intelligent contribution 'spurdon'. Have you got nothing better to do than make childish comments - you need to get a life.
ozjean
Well we knew we were down before this game anyway so wasn't too gutted. I thought we played okay, 4-0 was a complete aberration. I thought Liverpool were very poor actually and Aquilani - what an absolute waste of 20 million. We are just not good enough for the Prem at the moment but we wouldn't have missed it anyway. I think we can bounce back like WBA. Up the Clarets!
ozjean
Pompey fan here: looks like we'll be going down together then. Sorry it didn't work out better for you guys. Try to remember the highlights and the good times. They'll be just around the corner - if not next year then soon.
hammersmithblue
I sincerely hope 'spurdon' that you are not a Spurs follower, I could no way call you a fan of any club. My wife is a proper football and Spurs fan and is horrified by your comments. Still, we have to expect all kinds including complete idiots like you.
cornwallclaret
We were'nt good enough in the end, although it could have been different if Coyle had stayed. Never mind all that now, let's re-group and clean up in the championship so that we can have another go the following season. Burnley Forever.
WelshClaret
Sad to see you go, however at least your not Hull City or Portsmouth. Bounce back like the Magpies and Baggies. Your not the first club to come up to the Prem and go straight back down. Good Luck next season.
tomog
Sad to see you go, but better you than us...
RussianHammer
Ah well - Proud to be Claret!
claretdale
Watched the game in some state of unsettledness. I think now it was just that I expected the result and got it. Having said that I was proud of their efforts and the support from the fans was something special. Still that first goal was crap.
AndyHo
Damn it guys, I wanted to see the Claret Club in London relegated, not you guys! The foundations are there to come back up and IF you can hold on to a players like Fletcher, I am sure we will see you guys back. You guys just need to lose Brian Laws. I know I have been banging on about it in the past on here, but the guy is woeful as he doesnt fit the mentality that this team has. It's like gettin Tony Pulis to coach Barca!! Anyway best of luck lads and ladettes! PS I hope you guys are rocking the Turf in the final game of the season, looking forward to it :)
Lily_White
I am sad we are relegated but glad to have had the experience. Many thanks to all concerned and looking forward to a memorable Championship campaign, I sincerely believe we can be well placed for success. I trust the board to be optimistic, grasp the nettle and make the right decisions, tough as they may be, and spend wisely.
cornwallclaret
Am I gutted yes am I sad yes but like hammersmith says lets look back on some great memories beating united our first home game of the season. Lets be honest when we got promoted on that memorable day at Wembley most said we weren't bothered if it was only one season. We will be back maybe not for a few seasons but boy when we do get back we will rock the premiership.
sheclaret
Well that's a gallon of beer I owe my Liverpool-supporting mate. He predicted this at the start of the season (the tw*t)! I've loved this premiership ride, especially the first half of the season. Sadly we just gradually fizzled out after that - for various reasons discussed at length on these threads. In the end I can't get too emotional about relegation because I've been expecting it for so long. BUT I expect some wise decision-making & money-spending to be done by the board and proper preparation for our return bid. Let's not waste this experience. Bring on the championship! UTC!
Brompton Claret
Liverpool or Boom might have been a more appropriate headline :)
cubanclaret
Boom(Prem)&Bust(Champs). I wish I was confident of another boom too
turfmanphil
He he Brompton, my scouse mate also predicted the same thing and he's a tw*t as well. he wasn't too happy tonight though when I told him that Fulham are nailed on to win the Europa cup , and that we'll be in it next year because we play so fair. used to be called the inter cities fairs cup after all.
WelshClaret
 

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