Aston Villa welcome relegation scrappers Burnley to Villa Park on Thursday night at 20:00. Villa’s Premier League fate has already been decided after a less than impressive run in. They will live to see another day in the Premier League with 44 points guaranteeing them a lower mid-table finish. Burnley on the other hand, have one foot in the relegation zone and will travel to Birmingham determined to salvage a point that would take them out of immediate danger. It will be a hard-fought point for The Clarets, so to prepare you for the action I’ve prepped my top 3 Bet Builder Picks and a Cheat Sheet.
Villa boss Steven Gerrard may be representing burgundy colours these days, but not so long ago the former Liverpool legend was sporting red at Anfield. He has the opportunity to push Everton further into a relegation battle by sacrificing a point tonight and a win over City next week could hand his old club the title. This is a dreamlike scenario for Liverpool fans and unlikely to cross the managers mind but with nothing to play for at this point in the season it’s not a completely implausible scenario.
Results have slumped since Gerrard’s appointment and there are no excuses for the Villa boss with such a talented squad at his disposal. They enter this match with almost a clean bill of health bar Ezri Konsa, Kourtney Hause, and Leon Bailey in the treatment room. The absence of the former two means Calum Chambers will step in alongside Tyrone Mings. This could be problematic for the versatile defender to cope with Burnley’s physicality and will be good news for the likes of Weghorst and co.
That being said it’s impossible to write off such a capable squad that features world beaters like Coutinho. They’ve only been beaten twice in their last 6 games at the hands of Spurs and Liverpool. This is a slight turnaround in form for Villa which saw them notably beat Burnley away from home 3-1.
Mike Jackson’s Burnley are on the verge of a genuinely great escape. Their previous stalwart Sean Dyche is fully in the rear-view mirror after an astonishing run of results under their caretaker manager. Their close fought 1-0 loss against Spurs last time out to a controversial penalty call highlights the spirit around the club to fight for every last point. This game and their final fixture against Newcastle will be viewed as 2 very winnable games against teams with no fear of relegation and no hopes of promotion.
Injury concerns are the main issue for the visitors heading into this game. Most importantly centre-back duo James Tarkowski and Ben Mee if declared unfit, will leave a gaping hole in the middle of Burnley’s defense. Absent squad players, Pieters, Vidra, Westwood, and Gudmundsson will leave the bench looking sparse too. They will be heavily reliant on the starting XI to chase the result especially the likely reinstated Weghorst and his partner Cornet to trouble the Villa backline.
Aston Villa v Burnley Bet Builder Tips
Burnley to Win or Draw
A loss could be deadly to Burnley’s survival hopes on Thursday. Depending on Everton’s result tonight they will be put in direct competition with Leeds in 17th place for survival in the league. Points will be enough to keep them up due to their relative defensive stability compared to Leeds which is represented by their 20-goal difference advantage. A win tonight could mean that a draw against Newcastle next week would be enough to retain their Premier League status.
They will face off against a Villa team who have only won twice in 2022 at home. Gerrard’s win rate as a manager at Villa has recently been compared to Lampard’s superior rate at Everton. I was shocked to read such a damning stat of the manager and I think at this stage of the season he’ll have one eye on next season to regroup and refresh his squad. The permanent signing of Coutinho confirms that for me with such an early announcement being used to appease the concerns of worried Villa fans.
Burnley’s advantage tonight will come from their hosts inability to deal with speculative balls into the box recently. Recent goals against Palace and Liverpool have seen long balls into the box poorly dealt with and the resulting panic leading to a goal. Burnley have the highest number of long balls in the Premier League this season and will be contesting for every header and through ball in the final third. The calming presence of Ezri Konsa will be hugely missed against Burnley’s aggressiveness which I think could give them the edge. Burnley to gain at least a point tonight is available for odds of 1.67.
Maxwell Cornet to Score or Assist
Cornet scored a last-minute consolation goal last time out at Turf Moor in the 3-1 losing reverse fixture. He rounded Martinez after splitting Villa’s line and smashed home the ball to give the home fans something to cheer about. The Ivorian has been a breath of fresh air in what was a stagnant Burnley team with his pace, skill, and finishing ability.
He has slowed down in recent weeks in terms of goalscoring, but his contributions are still commendable. Since joining at the start of the season he’s produced 8 goals from 19 starts. This is even more impressive considering that he plays for a team that have failed to score in just under half their games this season. Reassuringly this stat is a thing of this season’s past, with just one of Burnley’s games seeing them fail to find the net.
That one game was last week against Tottenham. Mike Jackson opted for a defensive approach and dropped Cornet’s strike partner Wout Weghorst which saw their attacking chances limited. They’ve formed one of the most interesting attacking partnerships in the league and he’ll be happy to see his foils name on the team sheet once more tonight.
He recently registered his first assist of the season providing an excellent ball from the corner flag against Everton to find Collins at the back post. He may be on corner duty tomorrow night which has proved very fruitful for The Clarets. From their 32 goals this season 11 have been from a set piece. Villa have been one of the worst teams at dealing with them this season having seen 13 set piece goals go against them. He’ll also be in contention for free-kick and penalty taking duties which makes him good value to score or assist at 2.88.
Under 4.5 Cards
The bookings game has changed unfortunately and therefore my selections have to adapt or risk becoming obsolete. Referees in The Premier League have become far more cards shy in recent times. Even those we could regularly depend on such as Mike Dean to dish out some daft bookings have decided not to interfere with the run of the play even in his final season.
This disease has also spread to European competitions after witnessing the Europa League Final. A ridiculously low 2 cards were handed out over the 90 minutes which was not a true reflection of the number of bookable offences from both teams. There seems to have been an instruction to let the game go from the authorities in refereeing, which is now coming through at the highest level of football.
The man in charge of tonight’s fixture is Andrew Madley. As per the Cheat Sheet, he averages a measly 2.38 yellow cards per game this season. From his 16 games in the Premier League this season he’s only shown 5 or more cards twice. This makes him even less likely to get a booking than the infamous Jon Moss this season.
Burnley and Villa might not make it easy for him, especially Villa. They average the 2nd highest number of cards in the league this season behind the bad boys of Leeds. They are significantly better behaved at home though with only 1.78 cards per season in front of the home support. They’ll be tamed as well by the meaningless nature of this one so I’m expecting their claws to be clipped. Under 4.5 cards is good value for this tie priced at 1.53.
Written by an Andy verified content writer
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Aston Villa predicted XI (4-3-3) : Martinez; Cash, Chambers, Mings, Digne; McGinn, Luiz, Ramsey; Buendia, Watkins, Coutinho
Burnley predicted XI (4-4-2) : Pope; Roberts, Collins, Long, Taylor; McNeil, Cork, Brownhill, Cornet; Barnes, Weghorst
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* All odds displayed correct at the time of publishing *
How to watch Aston Villa v Burnley in the Premier League
📅 When is Aston Villa v Burnley? / Thursday, 19th May 2022, 20:00
🏟 Where is Aston Villa v Burnley? / Villa Park (Birmingham)
📺 What TV channel is Aston Villa v Burnley? / Sky Sports Main Event
🟨 …And who is the referee for Aston Villa v Burnley? / A. Madley 🏴