Burnley have won the last two games and seem to be picking up confidence yet we also are now picking up points, albeit two from draw in the last two games. Areadyou, this game is being seen as a six pointer as a win for either side would catapult them up the table before the next round of fixtures mid-week. I have asked Burnley fans on TheLongside.co.uk what they think about this afternoon’s clash.
1) How do you feel the summer transfer window went for Burnley?
Very well, for me, although I would not have bought Sordell and would have liked to have seen Ings sold with a replacement coming in (Deeney for example, whom we were linked with, or any other £5 million + British striker).
2) Many people would have Burnley down as the favourites to be relegated yet you are still in the mix with everyone else after a good run of results. Do you think you will stay up?
Have thought we would stay up all along, from the day we were promoted. We have a better manager than in 2009-10 and the team we were promoted with is/was better than the one that started the 2009-10 Premiership season, even before our summer activity. Two points to note though: I would say the standard of opposition this season is far better than when we were Premiership five years ago, both from what I have physically watched so far and from the fact last time we also had Portsmouth, Wolves, Blackburn, Bolton, Wigan and various other ‘smaller’ clubs competing with us. Also, and you hope these things even themselves out, but the ‘luck’ with both injuries and penalty conversions (scoring and conceding) has been far worse this time. Despite the results, and injuries, we have been far more competitive and consistent game in, game out this time compared to the last Premiership campaign. We will stay up.
3) Sam Vokes has been a big miss for you so far this season. Do you think he will return the same player and will this help Danny Ings get back his form from last season?
I was delighted to see him score in the reserves this week and I really hope to be proved wrong but from the day he ‘did’ his knee back in March or April I said I would be surprised to see him starting games this season. I feel it will be from next August when we see Big Sam starting games regularly. The reason? Well I’ve watched this lad since he arrived and last season he was awesome and rightly won Player of the Season ahead of Ings and the others but, my oh my, did it take some graft to get him performing. He is a ‘big unit’ and was pretty poor in his first year or so with us but only really had sub appearances and the odd start (most people were fuming when we paid £500,000 for him after an average loan spell and a pretty stale career to date). Then when we sold Austin (we had to), there were only two strikers left at the whole club (Ings and Vokes) and Dyche said “Austin leaving is a chance for Vokes” and he kept saying how he told Vokes to “be the man”. He put belief into Vokes’ veins and played him and Ings for ninety minutes every single game (we had nobody else) and with this came both improved fitness/mobility and confidence. He turned into a gem. So not only is he now coming back after a year out, he will also be wary of the injury and we are now at a far higher level. I feel the only way to get the Sam Vokes we know back is to start him when he is ready, tell him he is the man and keep giving him ninety minutes every single game and, in time, he will be back to what he is (injury pending). Can we afford to give him what may be five or more average ‘finding himself’ games while fighting a relegation battle? Sub appearances wont get ‘Sam Vokes’ back but giving him a guaranteed shirt for the rest of the season would do. So what do we do? Take that risk to hopefully get him back or limit him to sub appearances then make him the main man from August when Ings has gone and/or we have been relegated? It’s the latter for me.
4) What are your thoughts on Sean Dyche?
Genius. The best I’ve seen. He is a man who believes in the real things, that having no money can bring other advantages that being a big-spending can’66 t get, certain ‘spirits’ in the camp etc. Wouldnt change him for the world, although his first signing of the Season ummer (clearly one he wanted and not one with the few pennies he has left) in Sordell was surely the decision of Joey Deacon and not Sean Dyche.
5) Who do you consider to be the best and the worst signings so far in the Premier League this season?
George Boyd is a snip at £3 million in this crazy market. He is our best signing and Sordell at £500,000 plus wages is the worst.
6) What are your thoughts on Aston Villa, looking on from the outside?
Not seen you play but, no offence, genuinely, this coming weekend is the very first time I have heard nearly all fans actually ‘expect’ a win.
7) Which Aston Villa player would you most like in your team this weekend and why?
Hard one this. Delph is quality. Thought he was oustanding in the two England games the other month. However, first choice centre mid (along with first choice right back) is the very bottom position we need to fill…but Delph would be too good for the bench.
8) Which player should Aston Villa fear the most and why?
Daniel Ings, for sure, now he has that scoring feeling again at last. He had only scored two goals since February until he bagged against Everton the other week. He’s now scored five in the last three or four games (including England U21s which was at Turf Moor so all adds to his ‘scoring feeling’). I think he will score again this coming weekend.
9) Match prediction?
Clarets 2 v 0 Villa.
10) Playstation or Xbox?
Last console I had/played was an N64 when I was fifteen or sixteen. I don’t understand ‘gaming’ post puberty.
11) Lager or cider?
Lager, although I am more of a gin/tonic and vodka/soda man these days (healthy option). Cider reminds me of the taste of sick from when we used to drink in the park in our young teens.
Thanks to the fans of TheLongside.co.uk for participating in this week’s opposition view