League leaders Chelsea take on relegation strugglers Burnley at Stamford Bridge this weekend, with the visitors having failed to win in this fixture since 2017.
Here’s all you need to know about Saturday’s encounter:
Thomas Tuchel’s side have opened up a three-point lead over Liverpool at the top of the Premier League table, having breezed to a convincing 3-0 win away against Newcastle United at the weekend.
Having failed to score despite a dominant first-half, the Blues finally found their way through their struggling hosts in the closing stages, with England international Reece James netting two stunning efforts before Jorginho sealed the win late on from the penalty spot.
Even without both Timo Werner and Romelu Lukaku, finding the back of the net has been no issue for the European champions, with James now the club’s unlikely top scorer, while fellow full-back Ben Chilwell has also chipped in with vital goals in recent weeks.
With both Jurgen Klopp’s side and champions Manchester City dropping points at the weekend, Chelsea strengthened their position at the top, with it looking like they may be the team to beat in the title race this season.
As for their Champions League exploits, the west London side edged ever closer towards qualification for the knockout stages with a 1-0 win away against Malmo on Tuesday evening, with the game’s solitary goal coming from Hakim Ziyech after Callum Hudson-Odoi’s excellent driven cross.
Those two are likely to feature once again with both Werner and Lukaku set to miss out, although they will have increased competition for a starting berth in the form of Christian Pulisic, who returned to action off the bench in Sweden.
Meanwhile, Mateo Kovacic is also likely to be absent due to a thigh injury, although Mason Mount could be in line to return after his recent bout of illness.
Burnley’s long wait for a first Premier League win of the season came to an end on Saturday, as a first-half blitz saw them power past newly-promoted Brentford at Turf Moor, to inflict a first away defeat on the Bees.
The home side went ahead inside just four minutes through Chris Wood’s super strike on the turn, before full-back Matthew Lowton netted a rare goal with a header just after the half-hour mark, after summer signing Maxwell Cornet had earlier seen an effort disallowed for offside.
The former Lyon man did eventually get on the scoresheet, however, firing in superbly in the 36th minute for his fourth goal in just five league games for his new club, as the Clarets netted three first-half goals at home for the first time ever in the Premier League.
The visitors would net late on through substitute Saman Ghoddos, although that proved a mere consolation as Sean Dyche’s men hung on for a much-needed victory to move them just three points behind Leeds United in 17th.
While it has been a frustrating start to the season for Dyche’s side, the major bright spark has been that of Cornet, with the 25-year-old currently thriving in a forward role.
Burnley will need their new talisman’s goalscoring run to continue this weekend, as they seek to score against Chelsea for the first time since October 2019. Ahead of that clash, the only injury concern is that of former Brighton man, Dale Stephens.
Chelsea 2-0 Burnley, 31 January 2021
It’s been a dismal fixture in recent times for Burnley, with Dyche’s men having picked up just one point from the two sides last seven top-flight meetings, with Chelsea coming out on top in their most recent encounter back in January.
Having been held to a draw in his first game as Blues boss a few days earlier, Thomas Tuchel went into the match seeking a first league win at his new club, following his appointment in place of departed club legend, Frank Lampard.
A dominant start from the hosts at Stamford Bridge was rewarded as long-serving skipper Cesar Azpilicueta fired in from Callum Hudson-Odoi’s pull-back, with the young Englishman then going close to extending that lead soon after.
The win was eventually sealed in the 84th minute as the reinstated Marcos Alonso fired in a superb volley, with the visitors walking away having failed to register a single shot on target.
Chelsea: Mendy; James, Christensen, Silva, Rudiger, Chilwell; Kante, Jorginho; Ziyech, Hudson-Odoi, Havertz
Burnley: Pope; Lowton, Mee, Tarkowski, Taylor; Gudmundsson, Westwood, Brownhill, McNeil; Wood, Cornet
Who is the referee?
What channel is Chelsea v Burnley on?
Irish readers can watch, or stream, the match on Premier Sports, although the game is unavailable in the UK.
What time is kick off?
Saturday 6 November, 15:00 BST
Chelsea – 1/4
Burnley – 10/1
Draw – 9/2