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Match Previews

PREVIEW: Fulham v Burnley

The Clarets head to Craven Cottage seeking first Premier League win

25 August 2018

The Clarets hit the road again on Sunday when they head to the capital to meet Fulham at Craven Cottage (kick-off 4pm).

Burnley’s third Premier League game of the season continues a hectic schedule which will see Sean Dyche’s side play an eighth game since starting their competitive campaign exactly a month ago at Aberdeen.

Since then, the Clarets have come through two tricky rounds of the Europa League and trail 3-1 in their play-off tie against Olympiakos following the away leg in Greece on Thursday night.

The return comes next Thursday night, with the Clarets believing they can still turn the tie around at Turf Moor following a major test of character in the Greek capital.

But first, the attention is on trying to secure a first Premier League win of the campaign against the newly-promoted Cottagers.

Fulham have spent around £100m on new faces since coming up through the play-offs, with former Nice midfielder Jean Michael Seri becoming their £25m record buy and former Newcastle United striker Aleksandar Mitrovic making his loan move permanent for around £18m.

But the Londoners are yet to pick up a point and head coach Slaviša Jokanović knows the Clarets won’t make it easy, despite their heavy workload and a long trip back from Athens overnight on Thursday.

Jokanović (above) said: “We are going to try to find some kind of benefit from the game they played on Thursday night, but in the end we know what Burnley are about.

“They are never tired, they are running and fighting like a really crazy gang.

“I have respect for them, respect for how they play football, and respect for all the successful steps they have made these few seasons.”

Team news

The Clarets are likely to make a number of changes following Thursday night’s Europa League tie at Olympiakos, although Robbie Brady and Steven Defour are not yet ready to return.

August signing Matej Vydra is edging nearer a first taste of action after being named among the substitutes in Greece on Thursday night.

Summer signing Alfie Mawson is not yet fit for a Fulham debut following a knee operation in May.

Defender Tim Ream and midfielder Floyd Ayite are also out through injury, but Belgium defender Denis Odoi returns following a ban.

Former Burnley midfielder Kevin McDonald was an unused substitute for the Cottagers in their defeat at Tottenham last weekend.

Form guide

The Clarets are looking for their first Premier League win of the season but picked up a point from their opening away game at Southampton.

Fulham have lost both their first two games, both London derbies, following promotion from the Championship – a 2-0 home defeat to Crystal Palace and a 3-1 loss at Tottenham Hotspur.

What they’re saying

Burnley boss Sean Dyche: “The players won’t need picking up,” said the gaffer. “We made a lot of changes the other night and the one good side about this, going into the season, is that we have a lot of competitively fit players now.”

Fulham record buy Jean Michael Seri (above): “It’s time for us now to start to win games. After the first two games we took some positive lessons. We’ll work on the aspects that we needed to improve on from these last two matches.

“In particular, I think the second game against Tottenham we were aware that there is a lot of quality in our squad and we are going to lean on these positive aspects and try to get something from the game against Burnley.”

Match stats

This will be the first meeting between the clubs since the Clarets completed a Championship double on the way to promotion in 2015-16.

Fulham have won just two of their last 10 games against the Clarets, losing six and drawing two.

Jack Cork is set to make his 200th Premier League appearance, having made his Premier League debut in Burnley's 3-0 loss at Fulham in 2010.


David Coote

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