September 18, 2014

Two sides still targeting their first Premier League win of the season clash Saturday when Burnley entertain Sunderland at Turf Moor.

Newly promoted Burnley (0-2-2) started their top-flight campaign with two straight defeats but secured goalless draws in their last two matches and were unlucky not claim all three points in their most recent outing at Crystal Palace on Saturday.

The Clarets had a golden opportunity to seal victory at Selhurst Park when they were awarded a penalty five minutes from time, but Scott Arfield saw his spot-kick saved superbly by Eagles goalkeeper Julian Speroni.

Despite failing to win the game, the one point gained at Palace was enough to move Burnley off the foot of the table on goal difference, and they enter this weekend's round of matches in 18th place.

Burnley manager Sean Dyche was happy with his side's display against Palace.

"It was another really solid performance with plenty of good things," Dyche told his club's official website. "We know we are a work in progress and we are maturing as a side at this level.

"We want the players to be brave and they are. You don't want to come into this division with a load of flannel and whimpering around. So far we have done okay, but we need to be better than okay and we are aware of that, but there are good signs."

Sunderland (0-3-1) are 15th in the table with three points from four matches. The battled back twice from a goal to draw 2-2 with Tottenham Hotspur at the Stadium of Light last weekend with the help of a superb solo effort from winger Adam Johnson and a late own goal by Spurs substitute Harry Kane.

Black Cats captain John O'Shea admits he is expecting a tough test at Burnley but is confident the Wearsiders' style of play will create goal-scoring opportunities.

"Any game away from home in the Barclays Premier League is difficult whether it is against a team in the top four or a team who has just been promoted," O'Shea told his club's official website. "It is going to be difficult, I have seen some of the games they have played and they have been very organised and very competitive.

"I have played at Turf Moor before and the atmosphere will be electric so that is something we will have to cope with, but hopefully we will get the ball down and play our passing game because if we do that we can create lots of chances."

Burnley will be without injured strikers Danny Ings (hamstring) and Sam Vokes (knee), while midfielder Matt Taylor is doubtful after missing the trip to Selhurst Park with an Achilles problem. Although Ings will miss the Sunderland match, Dyche confirmed the injury suffered by the England Under-21 international at Crystal Palace was not as serious as first feared.

Sunderland striker Steven Fletcher will be pushing for a recall against his former club after being dropped from the matchday 18 against Crystal Palace.

The Black Cats have no reported fresh injury concerns.

The only previous Premier League meetings between these sides came in the 2009-10 season, when both sides claimed home victories. The Clarets won 3-1 at Turf Moor thanks mainly to a David Nugent second-half brace, before Sunderland triumphed later in the campaign 2-1 on Wearside.

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