Burnley vs Southampton news: Managerless Clarets sleepwalking into 'must-win' territory

Burnley are showing an odd lack of urgency to appoint a new manager to replace Sean Dyche, and that means a must-win game is looking an awful lot harder than it probably should.

Burnley go into a Turf Moor game without Sean Dyche at the helm for the first time in nearly ten years as they face Southampton in the Premier League this week.

The Clarets sacked Dyche earlier this month after the disappointing defeat at Norwich, but caretakers Mike Jackson and Ben Mee started well with a point at West Ham last week.

With games running out, though, Burnley are starting to look increasingly doomed and anything less than a win against the Saints may leave any new manager with too much to do if they are to maintain the club's Premier League status.

When: Thursday, April 21, 19:45

Where: Turf Moor

Where to watch: Sky Sports

Who is the ref for Burnley vs Southampton

Stuart Attwell referee

Stuart Attwell will be the man in the middle for this one, assisted by Stuart Burt and Wade Smith. John Brooks will be on VAR duty.

It will be the first time he has officiated Burnley this season, although Southampton are well accustomed to him.

He was in charge of their 4-1 home win against Brentford and their 1-1 away draw with Manchester United earlier this year.

Season stats 2021/22: Premier League matches (16), yellows (50), reds (1), penalties (5)

Recent form

As you would expect, Burnley's form has not been very good at all. They have won just one of their last eight games and four all season.

That win was a big one, and appeared to tilt the relegation scrap in their favour, but a 2-0 defeat to Norwich next up was a huge momentum killer and cost Dyche his job.

They probably should have beaten West Ham last week, but could only manage a 1-1 draw.

Southampton have been in a similar run of form with just one win in their last six, but they are safe in mid-table so can head to Turf Moor without pressure.

That one win was in their last match, though, which was a fine 1-0 home win over Champions League-chasing Arsenal.

Burnley and Southampton players in form

Wout Weghorst applauds Burnley fans

Burnley finally got some end product from Wout Weghorst at West Ham, with the misfiring Dutchman helping himself to a goal. It's not what you would call 'form,' but it's something.

One man who had been in good form was Maxwel Cornet, but he blotted his copybook by missing a huge chance at Norwich and missing a penalty at West Ham.

Cornet did score twice in the reverse fixture, though, so he certainly has form against Southampton.

Southampton have just been ticking along really without relying on any one player in form.

Last three matches

Southampton 2-2 Burnley (October 23, 2021)

If this one is as entertaining as the reverse fixture this season, we could be in for a treat.

Cornet gave Burnley an early lead, but Tino Livramento and Armando Broja turned things around for the Saints either side of half-time.

Burnley, and Cornet, were not finished though, with the Ivorian pouncing again to earn a draw for the Clarets.

Southampton 3-2 (April 4, 2021)

It was another goal-fest at St Mary's last season too, but this time Southampton were able to get over the line and take all three points.

Chris Wood and Matej Vydra put Burnley two goals up midway through the first half, but Stuart Armstrong and Danny Ings had the home side level before the break.

Nathan Redmond proved to be the matchwinner just past the hour.

Burnley 0-1 Southampton (September 26, 2020)

There were few thrills in this fixture last season, which was won for Southampton by former Burnley star Ings.

Ings pounced in the fifth minute at Turf Moor and that proved enough to secure all three points for the Saints.

As a side note, this game was the 400th of Sean Dyche's managerial career.

Last ten matches

Burnley wins: 4

Draws: 4

Southampton wins: 2

Burnley scored: 13

Southampton scored: 9

Managers' thoughts

Mike Jackson Burnley caretaker manager

Mike Jackson will probably be hoping this game is his last in charge of Burnley, who have been oddly quiet in their search for a new manager given the severity of their situation.

Jackson, though, has urged his players to make the most of back-to-back matches at Turf Moor.

"These games are opportunities, we have to take it on," he said. "Can we get more consistency in the way we play.

"Two home games are good and I think if we can keep that mentality, add what that stadium can do with the backing and atmosphere under the lights; it can become really powerful.

"I've played here under the lights as a player and I know what it's like and I know the impact that crowd can have. They've got a group that's fighting for them."

Southampton boss Ralph Hasenhuttl, meanwhile, has promised he will not tolerate his players relaxing for the remainder of the season.

Ralph Hasenhüttl prowls touchline for Southampton

He said: "I think that is the first time since I am here, we are not saying 'OK, now we are safe, so that's it'.

"This season we try to focus on higher targets and this is what we said.

"We are in this middle part of the table. It is very tight, every club now has the chance in the last six games to climb positions or to lose positions.

"This is the goal now. There is no time for looking for who can get the chance now.

"I think there should be a very clear message for everybody that the best XI should play and the players that deserve the most to play should get the chance to play."

Burnley vs Southampton predicted teams

Armando Broja celebrates for Southampton

Possible Burnley starting line-up: Pope; Roberts, Collins, Tarkowski, Taylor; McNeil, Cork, Brownhill, Cornet; Rodriguez, Weghorst

Possible Southampton starting line-up: Forster; Livramento, Bednarek, Salisu, Walker-Peters; S. Armstrong, Ward-Prowse, Romeu, Elyounoussi; Adams, Broja

Burnley vs Southampton prediction

Burnley's predicament breeds desperation, but whether that translates into a positive or a negative tends to be anyone's guess.

If Burnley keep losing, though, it's unlikely we will be able to squeeze any drama at all out of the relegation scrap this season, so for that reason alone we'll tip them to win 1-0.

READ MORE: Sacking managers in the Premier League relegation run-in: How often does it work?

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