Burnley Season Preview 2018/19 – Fixture analysis, Goalkeeping conundrum and Predicted finish
It certainly proved to be a brilliant season for Burnley as the Clarets made a return to Europe after a 51-year wait. Sean Dyche’s men brilliantly defied all odds to finish in a European spot last season. Burnley were defensively rigid and offensively fluid. A well-drilled side that took on many teams last season and often came out on top.
Sean Dyche will be gearing up for the new adventure ahead but the manager has been unable to land a number of his transfer targets. He has been left frustrated and the manager has warned that Burnley’s season could be at stake (h/t Independent).
The Clarets recently signed Middlesbrough defender Ben Gibson. But going into a first European competition after five decades requires the team to strengthen themselves with more additions. It has proved to be an underwhelming summer for the manager but he can certainly hope for a positive season because Burnley do possess the quality to flourish in Europe.
The Goalkeeping conundrum
Sean Dyche and co. displayed their willingness to win last season. They showed no fear, with the defence receiving an additional applause. Goalkeeper Nick Pope was an excellent deputy in place of the injured Tom Heaton.
Unfortunately, both of them are currently injured and will not be available for Burnley’s opening clash against Southampton. According to BBC, the Clarets have signed Manchester City goalkeeper Joe Hart to provide competition for Anders Lindegaard.
Burnley have a favourable run of fixtures until the 8th game week. The Clarets face the likes of Watford, Fulham, Wolves and Bournemouth in their first 7 fixtures. Their only tough one is against Manchester United and Burnley showed last season that they are capable of having a go at the league’s giants.
After a fruitful pre-season tour, Sean Dyche should be aiming to make a strong start and set a positive mood for the season. Burnley enjoyed a superb 3-1 win over Aberdeen and should be preparing for their clash against Istanbul Basaksehir in the next round of the Europa League qualifiers.
Predicted finish – 6th
They possess the determination and diligence to surprise anyone like they did last season. Burnley could once again defy all the odds and go on to achieve a strong finish. A top-6 finish? Not a distant dream for sure!