Burnley vs Chelsea Preview: Conte's side look to halt the Clarets' fine form

Burnley vs Chelsea Preview: Conte's side look to halt the Clarets' fine form

The Blues travel to Turf Moor as they continue to push for the final Champions League spot.

alexander-ford
Alexander Ford

Chelsea will travel to Turf Moor on Thursday night football to take on Burnley as they continue their quest for an unlikely Champions League spot in next season’s tournament.

The Blues are coming off the back of a 3-2 win against Southampton, where they had to come from behind to get the crucial win before they meet the Saints again at the weekend for a place in the FA Cup final.

Burnley have had an impressive season themselves, currently sitting in seventh place and Sean Dyche’s men will be looking to continue to cement their place as they search for their sixth win in a row.

Injury concerns grow for Burnley

Burnley will still have a number of players unavailable for the clash with last season’s champions, however, the Clarets will still feel confident that they can produce a result.

Dyche’s men secured a 3-2 victory against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on the opening day of the campaign and will be looking to do the double over the London outfit for the first time in almost 50 years.

Ben Mee is set to continue his absence from the side with a stress reaction to the bottom of his shin, having missed the last two matches, whilst Scott Arfield has been sidelined with a calf problem for at least two months.

The injury list continues to go on for the Clarets, with Steven Defour and Robbie Brady are both continuing to struggle with a knee problem, whilst Jon Walters has recovered from the same issue, although he has only played twice since September.

Predicted Starting XI: Pope, Lowton, Long, Tarkowski, Ward, Lennon, Cork, Westwood, Berg Gudmundsson, Vokes, Wood

Palmieri set for first Premier League start

Antonio Conte has stated how important the game for his Chelsea side is and is under no illusions that it will be a difficult fixture to try and get a positive result from. The Italian has conceded it will be difficult to finish in fourth, although he has told his players to take the fight with them.

The Blues could be without Danny Drinkwater as he continues to suffer from a groin injury. The former Leicester City midfielder is reportedly unhappy with his role at Stamford Bridge and is believed to be considering his future at the Blues.

David Luiz and Ethan Ampadu continue to sit on the sidelines as they have long-term knee and ankle injuries respectively, whilst Marcos Alonso could be set to face a potential ban following the incident with Shane Long at the weekend.

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That will mean a first Premier League start for Emerson Palmieri since his January arrival from AS Roma, having made a handful of appearances from the substitutes bench, while Ross Barkley could also feature.

Predicted Starting XI: Courtois; Azpilicueta, Christensen, Rudiger; Moses, Fabregas, Kante, Palmieri; Hazard, Willian, Morata.

Background

Burnley ran out victorious in the reverse fixture at the beginning of the season, as Chelsea had both Gary Cahill and Cesc Fabregas see red for challenges. The Clarets have not had a league double against the reigning top-flight champions since 1953-54.

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