The Premier League season commences this evening with the defending champions, Manchester City, traveling to Turf Moor to face the newly-promoted Championship winners, Burnley, led by Vincent Kompany.
The last encounter between these two teams was in March during the FA Cup.
That day wasn’t a pleasant memory for Burnley supporters, as they suffered a 6-0 defeat at the hands of the Blues, becoming one of the numerous teams last season to endure a hat-trick from Haaland.
Manchester City are of course overwhelmingly favored in the betting for their short journey to face Burnley in the north west.
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This clash also marks another encounter with the City legend, Vincent Kompany, who faces his former club as a manager for only the second time.
He’d undoubtedly wish for a better outcome than their previous 6-0 drubbing.
With Kompany at the helm, Burnley’s potential remains somewhat elusive.
This team has evolved considerably from the one that once tenaciously clung to their Premier League status under Sean Dyche.
Nonetheless, there are valid concerns regarding the squad’s calibre this season – especially against their opponents today.
Burnley is expected to adopt their 4-2-3-1 setup, primarily focusing on absorbing the offensive onslaught from Manchester City.
At the same time, the Clarets will be keen to capitalize on counter-attacks using their youthful forwards to energize the Turf Moor crowd.
Burnley’s leading scorer from the previous season, Nathan Tella – on loan from Southampton, who netted 19 times in 45 matches, won’t be on the pitch for the Clarets tonight, even though efforts are underway to secure his return.
For City, Nathan Ake is their sole injury worry. Kevin De Bruyne is available to start, and Josko Gvardiol might make an appearance following his recent transfer.
With a plethora of options at his disposal, Pep Guardiola will be keen to get last season’s treble winners off to the perfect start.
While a sold out Turf Moor might pose a certain challenge for City, the reigning champions have time and again demonstrated that a hostile crowd doesn’t really matter to them.
Even though Burnley showcased commendable performances last season, it’d be a monumental upset if they come out unscathed in this encounter.
City’s track record against Burnley has been stellar lately, and they are poised to prolong that streak this Friday night.
Betting on City to triumph in both halves at a 17/10 odds seems like an appealing bet for this match. While another 6-0 might be a stretch, a victory margin of three or four goals is plausible.
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