As an avid football fan of Burnley F.C. vs Chelsea F.C. lineups, I always look forward to matches between top English clubs. The clash between Burnley F.C. and Chelsea F.C. is no exception. In this article, I will be taking a deep dive into the starting lineups for both teams.
Analyzing the lineups provides great insight into the managers’ strategies and allows us to better understand the strengths and weaknesses of each squad. There are many factors that come into play when selecting a starting eleven – current form, injuries, tactical considerations, and opposition analysis.
Let’s now take a closer look at the lineups for both Burnley and Chelsea.
Table of Contents
Burnley manager Sean Dyche is known for his pragmatic approach and preferring a compact 4-4-2 formation. For their home match against Chelsea, Burnley lined up in their expected shape:
Goalkeeper and Defense
- GK – Nick Pope: The first name on the team sheet. Pope has been in excellent form this season, racking up 8 clean sheets already. His shot-stopping and command of the penalty box will be crucial against Chelsea’s fearsome attack.
- RB – Connor Roberts: A testing season for Roberts who has struggled with injuries. With Matthew Lowton injured, Roberts gets a chance to impress. He will have his hands full dealing with Chelsea’s left-sided overload.
- CB – Nathan Collins: One of Burnley’s standout performers this term. The 21-year-old center-back plays with maturity beyond his years. His positioning and tackling will be vital against the likes of Kai Havertz and Mason Mount.
- CB – James Tarkowski: The defensive leader and club captain. Tarkowski is an old-school, rugged center-half who revels in physical battles. He will need to keep close tabs on Chelsea striker Kai Havertz.
- LB – Charlie Taylor: With Erik Pieters injured, Taylor comes into the side. The left-back spot is a potential area of weakness that Chelsea may look to exploit. Taylor’s pace could be exposed.
- RM – Aaron Lennon: The veteran winger will look to use his pace and dribbling to hit Chelsea on the counter. His work-rate tracking back against Chelsea’s marauding wing-backs will also be important.
- CM – Ashley Westwood: The midfield pivots alongside Josh Brownhill. Westwood will screen the backline and try to dictate play from deep areas. Maintaining possession against Chelsea’s press will be a challenge.
- CM – Josh Brownhill: More creative and attack-minded than his partner Westwood. Brownhill’s late runs into the box and set-piece deliveries could lead to goal-scoring opportunities.
- LM – Dwight McNeil: Burnley’s standout attacker this season. McNeil’s pace, trickery, and crossing ability from the left will be an outlet for Burnley on the break. Should test Reece James defensively.
- ST – Jay Rodriguez: His aerial presence and hold-up play will allow Burnley to go direct if needed. Rodriguez will try to occupy Chelsea’s center-backs and bring teammates into play around him.
- ST – Wout Weghorst: Burnley’s new 6’6″ striker signed from Wolfsburg. His sheer size and strength give Burnley a different dimension in attack. Weghorst is adept at flicking on headers and winning physical battles.
European champions Chelsea under Thomas Tuchel play a fluid 3-4-2-1 system. Tuchel made some interesting selection choices against Burnley:
Goalkeeper and Defense
- GK – Edouard Mendy: After Kepa’s recent blunders, Mendy comes back into the side. His concentration must be sharp to deal with crosses and set pieces.
- CB – Trevoh Chalobah: Surprisingly picked ahead of Christensen. The academy product will match Burnley’s physicality in the heart of Chelsea’s back three.
- CB – Thiago Silva: The evergreen Brazilian brings a calmness and composure to Chelsea’s defense. His reading of the game will be important to snuff out Burnley’s counter-attacks.
- CB – Antonio Rudiger: The defensive enforcer who sets the tone with his aggressive approach. Rudiger must keep Burnley’s strikers quiet through a mix of touch tight marking and domineering physicality.
- RWB – Reece James: His attacking drive down the right will pin back Dwight McNeil defensively. James’ delivery from wide areas is a constant threat.
- LWB – Marcos Alonso: Somewhat of a surprise starter with Ben Chilwell on the bench. Alonso’s height gives him an aerial advantage, but his lack of pace could be exposed.
- CM – N’Golo Kante: Back from injury and a huge boost to Chelsea’s engine room. Kante’s tenacious pressing and tackling will be critical to winning the midfield battle.
- CM – Jorginho: The deep-lying playmaker tasked with controlling possession. Jorginho’s composure and passing range allow Chelsea to dictate the tempo of games.
- AM – Mason Mount: Chelsea’s most in-form attacker right now. Mount’s intelligent movement and combination play in the final third can unlock Burnley’s stubborn defense.
- RW – Christian Pulisic: The American winger gives Chelsea pace and direct dribbling ability from wide positions. He will drive at a potentially vulnerable Charlie Taylor.
- ST – Kai Havertz: Leading the line through the middle. Havertz’s movement between the lines and link-up play can disrupt Burnley’s defensive shape. His finishing ability inside the box must improve though.
- LW – Callum Hudson-Odoi: Something of a surprise starter ahead of Lukaku, Werner and Ziyech. Hudson-Odoi’s trickery and ball progression from the left wing add variety to Chelsea’s attack.
How the Lineups Match Up
Analyzing the lineups provides insight into how the two teams will approach this clash and match up against each other.
Burnley’s classic 4-4-2 shape pits them man-to-man all over the pitch against
Chelsea’s 3-4-2-1 formation. The key individual battles will be:
- Wout Weghorst vs Trevoh Chalobah/Thiago Silva
- Aaron Lennon vs Marcos Alonso
- Dwight McNeil vs Reece James
- Ashley Westwood/Josh Brownhill vs N’Golo Kante/Jorginho
For Burnley to get a result, they will likely need to capitalize on the following:
- Exposing Alonso’s lack of pace down their right side
- Winning the second ball from clearances and 50/50s in midfield
- Defending resolutely as a unit and limiting space in behind
- Clinical finishing from set-pieces and rare goal-scoring chances
Chelsea on the other hand will look to dismantle Burnley’s stubborn defense through:
- Stretching the play wide to create overloads
- Pulling defenders out of position with clever movement and combinations
- Playing through midfield to bypass Burnley’s front two
- Providing ammunition to Havertz, Mount, and Pulisic in advanced areas
This sets up an intriguing tactical battle between Sean Dyche’s pragmatic approach and Thomas Tuchel’s proactive footballing philosophy.
Predicting the Outcome
Based on the above analysis, I believe Chelsea’s quality and tactical flexibility make them strong favorites for an away victory.
Burnley will prove hard to break down, but Chelsea’s movement and interplay up front can unbalance even the best-organized defenses. The pace of Pulisic could expose Burnley’s fullbacks, especially down the Chelsea left.
In midfield, Kante’s return gives Chelsea mobility, tenacity, and control to dictate play. Jorginho’s passing range can bypass Burnley’s midfield duo and supply Chelsea’s dangerous attackers.
Final score prediction of Burnley F.C. vs Chelsea F.C. lineups
Burnley 0 – 2 Chelsea
Goals from Kai Havertz and Mason Mount to secure a vital 3 points for Chelsea’s title ambitions.
While just a prediction, carefully studying the individual matchups and tactics provides great insight into how this Premier League clash at Turf Moor might unfold.
As a fan, it will be intriguing to see if my analysis aligns with the actual events on matchday. Regardless of the scoreline, this fixture promises to be a hard-fought contest between two committed, well-drilled teams.
Examining the lineups is just the beginning of analyzing the many variables and subtleties that make football endlessly captivating. The drama will unfold on the pitch, but the build-up generates great anticipation and debate.