Sunderland vs. Burnley / FA Cup – This is another showdown between two Premier League teams in the third round of the English FA Cup, which comes seven days after the two teams met in the championship when Burnley won Sunderland 4-1 at home. Thanks to great results at home Burnley occupies after 20 rounds very good 12th place in the Premier League standings, while Sunderland is mere 18th and has even eight points fewer. Begins: 07.01.2017 – 16:00 CET
Right because of that we believe the home team will give its maximum on Saturday in order to revenge to Burnley, at least in the FA Cup, for heavy defeat in the Premier League. However, for something like that coach Moyes’ players must demonstrate the same combativeness like in previous league round, when they equalised two times with favoured Liverpool at home and in the end won very important point in the survival struggle. The result read at the end 2-2, and experienced Defoe scored both goals for Sunderland from penalties, which indicates that the team still has problems to score from game.
However, we need to have in mind that Sunderland lost just one out of last five matches played at home, so they will surely try to utilise the home-field advantage. True, Moyes still has great problems with absences as out of action are still goalkeeper Pickford, stoppers Denayer and McNair, midfielders Cattermole and Kirchoff, and forwards Anichebe, Gooch and Watmore, while in the meantime stopper Kone, midfielder Ndong and forward Khazri have left for the African Cup of Nations.
Probable lineups Sunderland: Mannone – Jones, O’Shea, Djilobodji, van Aanholt – Love, Rodwell, Larsson – Januzaj Defoe, Borini
We have said in the introduction that thanks to good results made at home Burnley currently occupies 12th place in the Premier League standings. In previous league round they had a great chance to finally win a point away as they had a player more at Etihad after 32 minute when the City’s midfielder Fernandinho was sent off but despite that Burnley played overly cautiously and was punished with two received goals at the beginning of second halftime. Only in the finish of match defender Mee scored a consolation goal.
Of course, coach Dyche was extremely angry after such badly played match, especially as they before that won at home Middlesbrough by 1-0 and Sunderland by even 4-1. However, their current position in the middle of standings, where they have eight points more than teams in the drop zone, allows them to try to make something in the FA Cup, especially as Sunderland has many problems with absences at the moment. On the other hand Dyche can count on all his players on Saturday, including midfielder Marney whose suspension has expired.
Probable lineups Burnley: Heaton – Lowton, Keane, Mee, Ward – Boyd, Marney, Hendrick, Arfield – Gray, Vokes
Sunderland – Burnley PICK
Regardless that Sunderland has many problems with injuries we believe that recent draw with Liverpool has strenghten their self-confidence ahead of match against Burnley in the FA Cup, especially as they lost to Burnley just couple a days ago by even 4-1 in the championship.
Pick: Asian handicap 0 Sunderland
Odds: 1.70 at interwetten (down to 1.65 can be played)