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Burnley will embark on a trip to the Riverside stadium this coming Saturday as they prepare to take on relegation threatened Middlesbrough in the Premier League.
The Clarets managed to break their 7 game winless run in the English top division when they defeated Stoke City 1-0 at home in the midweek round of fixtures. Sean Dyche will be hoping his side are able to carry that momentum to get maximum points against Boro.
Burnley have gone head to head against Middlesbrough on two occasions this season, once in the league and once more in the FA Cup third round and emerged triumphant on both times. However, their poor away form will be playing on their minds as they go about chasing a win.
Not many injury concerns for Dyche going into the game with Dean Marney the only long-term absentee, having been ruled out for the rest of the season. Midfielder Johann Berg-Gudmundsson is expected to be fit by Saturday, but may not feature in the matchday squad.
The captain is an inspiration on the field. His presence on the pitch infuses confidence in the entire team. A sure starter.
The 27-year old had a decent outing against Stoke on Tuesday night and will continue to feature on the right-hand side of the defence.
The former Manchester United man has been a revelation in the ongoing campaign and has been Burnley’s best player by a stretch. Irremovable from the team.
And alongside Keane it will be his equally impressive defensive partner Ben Mee. The 27-year old hasn’t been in the spotlight due to Keane’s brilliance, but he has been equally good and merits his place in the starting XI.
The 31-year old may not be the most exciting of full-backs, but brings a certain level of sturdiness and solidity to the backline. He will start at left-back on Saturday.
Scored just his second goal of the season in the 1-0 win over Stoke on Tuesday. The goal will have given a him a shot of confidence and he will look to build on it against Boro.
The Republic of Ireland international was one of the better performers for Burnley against Stoke. He will keep his place in the line-up in central midfield.
The Belgian midfielder started in the midweek out on the left-flank, but could be reinstated to a more central role on Saturday in place of Joey Barton.
Coming into the fray on the left-flank will be Scott Arfield. The 28-year old did not feature in the midweek game and could return into the scheme of things for the Middlesbrough encounter.
The 27-year old was benched in favour of Sam Vokes against Stoke, but will surely be included in the starting line-up on Saturday afternoon.
Partnering Barnes upfront will be Andre Gray. The club’s top-scorer has been an ever-present in the line-up when fit and is a certain starter against Boro.