Burnley-West Ham United Preview
West Ham United might be doing enough at the moment to keep themselves from relegation.
The Hammers look to remain unbeaten in a third consecutive contest on Wednesday night, when they welcome an ailing, but suddenly well-off, Burnley club to London Stadium.
Sitting on 31 points, West Ham (8-7-18) began the week 16th in the Premier League table and four points from the drop zone. Their status comes after snapping a three-game losing streak (in which they failed to score a goal) with a rousing 3-2 home upset of Chelsea last Wednesday and a 2-2 draw at Newcastle over the weekend.
Though Jonjo Shelvey's equaliser for Newcastle in the 67th minute on Sunday erased a 2-1 advantage for the Hammers, their earned four points in the last two matches is a massive accomplishment for a club that recorded five over the previous 11 Premier League contests.
"It's definitely encouraging because before the last two games we weren't scoring goals," midfielder Michail Antonio, who recorded his second goal in as many matches on Sunday, told West Ham's official website. "Now we've shown that we can score goals, we need to start doing better at the back, and we'll start winning games.
"The mindset for our next few games is that we want three points from each of them, and that's what we believe we can get."
In order to do so, the Hammers need to play better than they showed at Burnley on Nov. 9. Despite putting four shots on target, West Ham lost 3-0 at Turf Moor - their second consecutive defeat to the Clarets.
After suffering a disheartening 5-0 loss at Manchester City coming out of the league's coronavirus pandemic lockdown, Burnley (13-7-13) have conceded one goal whilst going 2-1-0 within the league. Though the Clarets' left their home pitch a little disappointed after yielding a Sheffield United goal in the 80th minute to erase a 1-0 lead on Sunday, the final 1-1 result left Burnley ninth in the table - which is quite the accomplishment considering they seem pretty thin on top-notch talent at the moment.
Though Chris Wood (11 league goals) was fit enough to come on as a sub against Sheffield, Ashley Barnes (six goals) is still hurting. Now, other important cogs such as captain Ben Mee (thigh) and midfielder Jack Cork (ankle) might not be fit to feature for the remainder of the season.
Still, what the Clarets have been able to accomplish of late, and throughout this unique season, is rather impressive.
"It's not ideal, but it's been that since we (got) back (from the lockdown), and we still have a competitive edge to us," manager Sean Dyche told Burnley's official website.
"I'm proud of the players...I'm not going to be over-critical of them at the moment. We are working at maximum without a number of bodies, and unfortunately the injuries have come at an awkward time when we still have games to go.
"But, as you see, whatever team we put out there is ready for the challenge."
Wood and Barnes each scored against West Ham in November.
Updated July 6, 2020