Sean Dyche has admitted that his side will have to be at their best to come away with three points against a “fantastic” Chelsea side.
The Burnley boss was in good spirits ahead of the fixture and rightfully so after some fine performances in recent weeks propelled them to within two points of sixth-placed Arsenal.
The Clarets are also looking for an impressive double, having made a lightning start to their season by beating the Blues 3-2 at Stamford Bridge in the first match of the campaign, with Dyche believing that his side can take inspiration from that win.
He said: “There was a real clear mindedness in the win at Stamford Bridge and you could sense it in the dressing room.
“We were in good shape tactically and full of energy and we performed fantastically well.
“The players are in good shape. There’s a willing desire from the players to play. We know Chelsea are fantastic, they’re a good side and we’re going to have to take them on again but it’s fantastic to be at Turf Moor doing it.”
The gaffer admitted that playing on a Thursday night is unusual for his side, but believes that his players are eager to embrace the challenge.
When asked whether playing on a Thursday night could have a negative impact on his side, Dyche remarked: “No, not really. The way that we work and the way that we plan is the equivalent to how we do for a Tuesday night game.
“The build-up has been similar to normal. It doesn’t hold anything other than a good prospect for a good game.”
From the other side:
Chelsea manager Antonio Conte knows his side will face a stern test at Turf Moor but admits that his side must play for the three points to keep their hopes of finishing in the top four alive.
“We play a really strong team in Burnley, a team having a fantastic season and it won’t be easy to get the three points. But we have to try to win this game,” said Conte.
“They are playing very well and have won their last five games, so we know that it will be a difficult game.
“We have to pay great attention. We must be focused on the present and it’s important that we don’t look too far ahead.”
Dyche confirmed that stand-in skipper Ben Mee will miss the game with a stress problem to his shin. The manager noted that the injury isn’t too serious but confirmed that the club were keeping a close eye on the problem.
Jon Walters is back training with the first team squad after playing for the under23s earlier in the week. Steven Defour, Robbie Brady and Scott Arfield are still sidelined but making good progress with their recoveries.
Conte may shuffle his pack for the visit to Turf Moor. He confirmed that January signing Emerson Palmieri will replace the suspended Marcos Alonso at Turf Moor after struggling to earn a place in the side since his arrival.
Ross Barkley is expected to be involved, while a late call will be made on Danny Drinkwater, who is struggling with a groin problem. The notable injury absentees are David Luiz and Ethan Ampadu.
The Clarets come into the game in fine form, racking up five consecutive Premier League victories. Dyche’s men currently hold the longest unbeaten run in the league and will be looking to extend that as they push for European qualification.
Chelsea visit Turf Moor after an inconsistent few weeks, picking up only two wins in their last five league games. The Blues came back from 2-0 down to beat Southampton in their last league encounter and Conte is expected to make several changes to his side with an FA Cup semi-final against the Saints to follow on Sunday.
The Clarets will be hoping to complete their first league double over Chelsea since the 1968-69 season.
Dyche’s men are unbeaten in their seven previous Premier League midweek home games, winning four and drawing three.
Chris Wood has become somewhat of a lucky charm this season for the Clarets, as the side have not lost any of the eight league matches in which he has scored in this season.
Chelsea have not been at their best against the top seven sides this season, with the Blues only managing two victories in 10 games involving those sides.
The Blues have conceded 33 goals in the Premier League this season, which is four more than their seventh-placed opponents.
Referee: Bobby Madley