Burnley’s 3 game unbeaten run was bought to a shuddering halt on Monday when they were subjected to one of those rare occasions in which a Tony Pulis side scored four goals. That goal flurry meant West Brom ran out 4-0 winners at The Hawthorns and stopped The Clarets getting back into the top half of the table.
Life doesn’t get any easier for Sean Dyche’s men and they play host to Manchester City this lunchtime although with home wins over both Liverpool and Everton already this season that is not to say that Pep Guardiola’s men are going to get a free hit at Turf Moor.
What will concern Sean Dyche is the fact that his Burnley side capitulated in the first half at The Hawthorns with them being 3-0 down within the first 37 minutes. Although they looked a bit more steady after the break the game was all but a formality by that point with Solomon Rondon adding insult to injury halfway through the second half.
And they will need to be steady at the back this lunchtime when they play host to Manchester City but in fairness the fact that City have been anything but steady as of late is definitely a criticism that you could level at Pep Guardiola’s side.
It’s now 12 games in a row in which they haven’t kept a clean sheet. Once again Vincent Kompany is out injured and John Stones is not quite living up to his near £50m price tag. The England international was called into question again on Wednesday night as many felt that he was to blame for Borussia Monchengladbach going ahead in their Matchday 5 encounter.
City had to make do with a draw after David Silva leveled the score and it’s a point that sees them assure their place in the Round of 16. But it’s only assured second in the group so that means that City will have to avoid some big names in the New Year if they are to have any chance of repeating their Semi Final exploits of last season.
Last Saturday it was a better outcome as they came away from a trip to Crystal Palace with a slender 2-1 win. The headlines were undoubtedly made by Yaya Toure. Firstly because it was such a surprise that the Ivorian was back in the fold and then secondly it was his brace that made sure City left South London with all three points.
But that win was only good enough to see them end the weekend in third place. They may have not lost in their last five league outings but there has been a few too many draws as of late and with just 1 point separating the top three those dropped points really do make all the difference.
But with City playing first this weekend out of all their rivals it gives them the perfect opportunity to go back top at lay down a marker to both Chelsea and Liverpool who play later today. Burnley will look to make it difficult for their opposition but I can’t see anything other than an away win and the blue half of Manchester going back to the summit for a couple of hours at least.