Another year, another three points?

31 December 2017
Monday marks the beginning of a New Year in all of our lives. Resolutions will be made, and no doubt broken by the end of the month. Let us all hope 2018 is as successful for Sean Dyche and our own proud club as 2017 faded away with another dreadful refereeing error going against the Clarets.

It is a great feeling to know that barring the biggest collapse by any club in football history, the famous old Clarets will still be playing at the highest level of English club football at the end of 2018.

The team has shown all season that they have what it takes to beat our guests Liverpool at Turf Moor on Monday. Another sold out, full house will hopefully be treated to some wonderful full bloodied football when the referee blows his whistle at 3pm to signal the start of the match.

Burnley's direct approach is certain  to unsettle a vulnerable Liverpool defence where  Jurgen Klopp's hesitation over who actually is his best  goalkeeper may  still work in Burnley's favour.

The Clarets will need however to take advantage of the limited clear chances that are likely to come their way. Goals are at a premium for Burnley but they don't concede too many either.

Further good news before the game for the Clarets is that the opposition are likely to  be weakened by having their best player missing.

Leading goal scorer, talisman and hot contender for Player of the Season, Mohamed Salah limped off before the end of their match on Saturday against Leicester City and manager Jurgen Klopp didn't sound too hopeful that he would be fit to play at Turf Moor.

The Egyptian international scored Liverpool's equaliser in the 1-1  draw against the Clarets at Anfield in September and has torn defences to shreds  this season  with his speed, strength and goal scoring prowess.

He would be a big miss for the Reds, because while Liverpool can call on other top class strikers, the mercurial Salah has been their potent force this season.

Burnley have no such injury doubts after midfielder Jeff Hendrick was declared fit after losing his balance and falling awkwardly on Saturday,
following a nasty collision with the Terriers goalkeeper.

Another clean sheet for goalkeeper Nick Pope and his defence against Huddersfield, once again proved a point. Pope, like Bardsley, Long and Taylor are Premier League standard defenders good enough to fit into the Dyche framework, just as well as the players they have replaced.

With James Tarkowski back from suspension for the Liverpool match it will be interesting to see what Dyche does. Personally I hope Long gets another opportunity to show that he would be a natural replacement for Tarkowski if, as looks increasingly likely, he leaves Turf Moor at the end of the season. 

New contracts need to be signed by several Burnley players soon including Tarkowski, Scotty Arfield, Stephen Ward and Dean Marney, it would be a big boost for all should pens be put to paper quickly.

No player is irreplaceable in a Sean Dyche Burnley side. Dyche has immense belief in each and every player in the first team squad, but that will not stop the transfer rumour mill going into overdrive immediately after the match. 

The forever realist and ultra pragmatic Sean Dyche, has come out and said he can't guarantee no players will be leaving or that no players will be arriving in the January window.

It would surprise me though  with a European place up for grabs and a vault full of cash if Burnley fans don't see a couple of new additions in January. 

I don't expect them however to be of the calibre of the £75 million already spent by Klopp on Southampton's Virgil van Dijk. Burnley regrettably do not have at their disposal, a feeder club of the calibre of the Saints.

A new centre back and perhaps another winger to fill the void left by the injured Robbie Brady, will hopefully leave Clarets' fans open mouthed with great expectation. 

This Burnley centric match preview was written by "The Donz" (TEC).

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