Check out our analysis, team news, line-ups and see our prediction for this match.
Burnley welcome Brighton & Hove Albion on Saturday afternoon in Turf Moor for the opening game of the Premier League of the 2021/22 season.
As the lowest survivors of last season, both teams will be eager to advance their final positions after the Clarets ranked 17th.
Prediction for this match
For the sixth year in a row Burnley will compete in the Premier League and Sean Dyche hopes he has the resources to lead the club out of relegation zone again.
Aside from an impressive seventh place in 2017-18, the Clarets have spent most of their time maintaining their top status, and last year was no different.
Burnley had a disappointing end to the previous season – losing seven of their last ten league games – resulting in a 17th win.
The Clarets need to address their homeland form if they are to have a strong campaign this year. Dyches men are currently without a win in their last 10 league games at Turf Moor – five draws and five lost – with a 3-2 win over Aston Villa in January, their last win on home soil. Only once in their league history have they had a long run without a win at Turf Moor and completed eleven games between April and November 1979 when they were in the second division.
Burnley also have a poor record against Saturday’s opponents Brighton, having won just one of their last seven home games against them, a narrow 1-0 Premier League win in December 2018.
After a 17-month absence, the Clarets will welcome the return of home fans this weekend and hope their support can push the team to end its miserable run.
Burnley goes into his opening game after winning five of his six friendlies last season, albeit against fewer opponents, with his only loss to Spanish side Cadiz in their last game last weekend. With the return of a few key players on Saturday, Dyche will name a strong team that he hopes can take all three points against a potential relegation rival.
Brighton & Hove Albion are entering their fifth consecutive Premier League season this season and will be looking to get their way out of the drop zone again with their head coach Graham potter also the hope that they can move much further up the table.
The Seagulls have not yet made any real progress in terms of league position, with their highest result being 15th in 2017-18 and 2019-20.
Last season Brighton failed to achieve good results, winning only nine of their 38 league games and suffering 15 defeats. On the positive side, they never fell back into the relegation zone, always kept a fairly comfortable distance between themselves and the last three, and ended up finishing 13 points ahead of Fulham in 18th place.
Although Brighton has been praised for its progressive style, it failed to consistently deliver in the final third. Potter’s men had an expected total of 51.7 goals last season in the Premier League but only scored 40 goals, meaning they hit the net almost 12 times less than was expected based on the quality of their chances.
With many attack options available to him including those like Neal Maupay, Danny Welbeck, Aaron Connolly and Leandro Trossard‘Potter needs to see their form improve in the final third if the club is to increase their chances of surviving in the Premier League.
At the beginning of the opening weekend, the Seagulls, who won just one of their three friendlies in the preseason, hope for a repeat of their previous two away games in the top division, which they beat Newcastle United 3-0 and won Watford.
Brighton are also unbeaten in any of their last four matches against Burnley, so they can trust Turf Moor on Saturday. With just one of the first eight games against a team from the top 6 last season, Potter will gauge his chances of a strong start to the new season.
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Burnley is expecting a key duo Nick Pope and Chris Wood possible from Saturday. Both came through the game with Cadiz unscathed, with Pope playing his first minutes since his knee surgery in May, while Wood got the first 45 minutes after serving New Zealand at the 2020 Olympics.
Indeed, Wood will be an important player for Dyche when he plays this weekend; The 29-year-old has scored more goals (eight) against Brighton than any other team in his career in the English league.
Matthew Lowton will also be available after the right-back missed the last two preseason games due to self-isolation rules after a family member tested positive for coronavirus.
However, two players excluded from their season opener are midfielders Dale Stephens and defense attorney Kevin Long, both of whom are on hold with respective ankle and knee injuries, which resulted in the couple undergoing surgery at the end of their last term.
Dwight McNeil was one of Burnley’s brightest sparks during pre-season and is expected to start on the left wing Johann Berg Gudmundsson play on the other side.
As for Brighton, Potter has confirmed that right-back Tariq Lamptey (Thigh), striker Danny Welbeck (thigh) and defender Dan Burn (Knee) are all unlikely in the opening game due to injury.
Lamptey has had his problem since December 2020, while Welbeck and Burn suffered their most recent injuries in their 3-1 friendly win over Luton Town last month.
Club captain Lewis Dunk had toe surgery in the summer but should be in the starting XI after the last warm-up game against Getafe last weekend.
defender Adam Webster, who recently signed a new deal with the club, will join the triple chain alongside Dunk Joel Veltman, with Solly March and Pascal Gross likely to operate in wing-back roles.
Twenty three years old Enock Mwepu, who joined the club from RB Salzburg this summer, could be in midfield alongside his debut Yves Bissouma, while Maupay is expected to lead the front lines.
Burnley possible starting line-up:
Pope; Lowton, Tarkowski, Mee, Taylor; Gudmundsson, Westwood, Cork, McNeil; Barnes, wood
Brighton & Hove Albion possible starting line-up:
Sanchez; Webster, Dunk, Veltman; March, Bissouma, Mwepu, Gross; Trossard, Mac Allister; Maupay
Probability: Burnley 1-1 Brighton & Hove Albion
In recent years this game has often been a tentative encounter with few goals scored; In fact, more than two goals have been scored in only four of the last 14 games.
Another hard-fought battle between two teams struggling to survive the Premier League is expected on Saturday and with the two of them indistinguishable, a draw could be expected at Turf Moor.
Best betting tip for this match
Our expert tipster partners at footpredictions.com predict a double chance of a draw or an away win in this game. Click here to see more football predictions to see what else they are predicting for this game and for more proven soccer tips.Draw / Path: Data