Burnley v West Brom: Home win in the typical Clarets' way

Ben Mee.
Ben Mee could easily be playing at a Top 6 club.

This is a unique opportunity for Burnley to edge closer to safety and they should take it in a low-scoring game, says Jamie Pacheco.

"So I can’t see this being full of goals and taking all the above into consideration, a Burnley win with under 3.5 goals at 6/4 looks more appetising than the straight win at just above evens."

Burnley v West Brom
Saturday February 17, 20:00
Live on Sky Sports Main Event

Burnley keep on grafting along

You can't imagine there were wild celebrations in the Burnley dressing room after a 1-1 draw at home to Fulham on Wednesday. But you can also imagine they also won't have been too upset, either. In drawing the game, they not only added a point to their tally but perhaps more importantly, deprived a relegation rival of getting three.

I've talked a fair bit about Ashley Barnes on this site before and made the point that he's no world-beater. But then again, this is Burnley rather than Bayern Munich and right now he's the best they've got with longtime strike partner Chris Wood still out injured. He'll graft all day all right and that finish of Barnes' for the equaliser against the Cottagers was a well-taken goal and a reminder that if you create chances, he'll score some of them.

But therein lies a problem. Burnley just don't create enough chances. Assuming they stay up, a proper playmaker and another striker have to be considered priorities because they're well stocked in defence and defensive midfield areas.

What next for Allardyce?

It's probably too late for West Brom now. Just about every stat will tell you that 13 points after 24 games doesn't even give you so much as a fighting chance of beating the drop.

To be fair to Sam Allardyce, they've improved a bit since he arrived but maybe not to the extent that was hoped for. They still give the ball away too much and don't have much going forward. Matheus Pereira has probably been the best of a bad bunch as regards the attacking players and new signing Mbaye Diagne looks lively and strong. His was a well-taken goal against Manchester United in midweek.

Allardyce Profile 1280 .jpg

We don't know if Big Sam will be staying around for life in The Championship but if he is, he'll be looking at which players he think he can count on for a strong promotion push next year. His best player is Conor Gallagher, who may not be getting a game at parent club Chelsea anytime soon but may not fancy a season in the second tier, though.

Burnley to edge it

You don't get many wrong prices in the Premier League these days, do you?

It's 4.216/5 West Brom and 3.412/5 the draw.

Burnley, at home and 14 points better off are understandably warm favourites at 2.1211/10. They're the better side, particularly in defence and are on a fine run with two draws and a win in their last three in the league.

There are two problems with that price, though. Burnley don't win that many games, just seven in 24 attempts. And if Wednesday's draw against Fulham was anything to go by, not losing looks the name of the game now rather than winning.

But that's just me playing Devil's Advocate. If there was one game all season Sean Dyche would look at and say 'Right, if we don't get three points here, we never will.' it may just be this one and he may just be that little bit more adventurous this time.

West Brom have won just two games in 24 and kept just two clean sheets in those 24.

So they should concede but won't find it so easy to score themselves. The likes of Nick Pope, James Tarkowski and Ben Mee could easily be playing at bigger clubs and a Burnley clean sheet is very possible here. The 30 goals they've conceded is joint-best with Brighton of any side in the bottom half of the table.

So I can't see this being full of goals and taking all the above into consideration, a Burnley win with under 3.5 goals at 6/4 looks more appetising than the straight win at just above evens.

Conor good for a card?

I'm a big fan of Conor Gallagher. He reminds me of a sort of cross between Robbie Savage, Dennis Wise and Scott McTominay. Now, that's a weird mix. But with hard running, tough tackling, some proper ball skills and the occasional goal, he's got characteristics of all of them.

He's also got nine bookings for the season in 20 games, which works out at a booking in 45% of his matches, though it's actually just over 50% when it comes to games where he's started.

That should come as no surprise.

We can't all be Xavi or Andrea Pirlo in that sitting midfield role and Gallagher understandably puts in some big tackles as part of that midfield battle. That's no issue as far as I'm concerned because picking up a few yellows for a player in that position is just part of the job description.

pirlo21.jpg

But is he a good bet at 17/10 to get a yellow here? I think he is. 17/10 is implied probability of 37% and we've just established he's booked in almost exactly 50% of the games he's started his season.

There's more good news when we look at the ref. 'Marmite Man' Mike Dean is in charge here, the man who famously sent off two Southampton players against Man Utd a couple of weeks ago and then followed that up with the 'incorrect' dismissal of Tomas Soucek just a few days later, a red card that was overturned. He's averaging 3.5 yellows a game and a red in 38% of matches, both of which are extremely high.

As for Gallagher, he's been booked in each of his last two, so could well go three from three.

Few goals but lots of cards

Over in the world of same-game multi-bets, you can get 13/20 on under 2.5 goals and 17/10 on over 40 points (five yellows or two yellows and a red). Given what we've said of Dean and the fact this is a big game and you wouldn't rule out getting 40 points or more. The double comes to 4.31.

Jamie's Premier League P/L 20/21

Staked: 32pts
Returned:33.2pts
P/L +1.2.

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