Burnley aiming to continue their revival but face tough Wolves test
Burnley will look to continue their good run of form recently, one which has taken them above the relegation zone following the start of a revival of fortunes for the club.
Sean Dyche has his team playing like the Burnley of old right now, with just one defeat coming in the last six matches. Wolves will present a tough test, but then Burnley have tightened up themselves in recent weeks.
Wolves come into this match after an impressive victory over Chelsea in midweek, coming from behind to earn their first win in three games after successive defeats.
The West Midlands side have been very unpredictable this season, not enjoying the same levels of consistency as last season and struggling for goals.
That being said, they still remain one of the toughest opponents in the league on their day, meaning that this contest is hard to call.
Form Guide (all comps): WLDWD
Reasons to be cheerful:
Eight points from five matches is better form
Only defeat in six came against Man City
Reasons to be fearful:
Must continue form through tricky Christmas schedule
Wolves will be tough to manage
Despite looking out of their depths at times this season, there are sure-fire signs that Burnley are building up some momentum coming into the busy festive period.
In a tricky spell which has seen them face Everton, Arsenal and Aston Villa, The Clarets have only conceded one goal and looked something like their old self again.
Nine of their 10 points this season have come in their last six matches, and incredible turnaround from just one point in their previous six.
Dyche is likely to have the luxury of selecting the same side as in recent matches, with no new injury concerns to report. His only selection choice will be who partners Chris Wood in attack, Barnes or Rodriguez.
Wolves will certainly be tough, but Burnley are no pushovers themselves.
Star Man – James Tarkowski
Has been important since returning from injury and brilliant in only conceding one goal in last three matches
Form Guide (all comps): DWLLW
Reasons to be cheerful
Confidence boosting win over Chelsea
Podence and Neto linking up well together
Reasons to be fearful
Still look short of goals without Jimenez
Burnley will be tough to beat at home
Wolves’ 2-1 victory over Chelsea in midweek eased some of the pressure which had been building over recent weeks, particularly since the injury to Raul Jimenez which is keeping their goalscorer out indefinitely.
A comeback win always does a team some good, especially when it comes against another top side such as Chelsea. Wolves’ previous win came against Arsenal, continue their fantastic record against the traditional big sides.
There is still a large question mark around where the bulk of Wolves’ goals will come from in the absence of Jimenez, though Neto and Podence have shown glimpses of quality linking up together lately, both scoring against Chelsea.
Wolves should have Joao Moutinho to call upon once again after the midfield maestro missed the last one through suspension. Adama Traore impressed as a substitute against Chelsea and could come back into the fold.
Star Man – Daniel Podence
The 25-year old Portuguese striker looks at home in the Premier League, and is enjoying the extra responsibility of late.
A tight, hard-fought fixture
Wolves slight favourites though Burnley much improved
Could finish all square
Despite there being eight places between these two sides, there is very little to separate them on current form and recent performances.
After a dire start to the season, Burnley are now looking like the team of old.
Both are not scoring too many goals, but are keeping things tight at the back, which is why this one could finish level.