Burnley v Leicester: Wood and Under can light up tight game

Chris Wood and Cengiz Under are the men to follow in Wednesday's Premier League clash between Leicester and Burnley, according to Andy Schooler.Chris Wood and Cengiz Under are the men to follow in Wednesday's Premier League clash between Leicester and Burnley, according to Andy Schooler.


Injury woes for both sides

Two sides riddled with injuries will go head-to-head on Wednesday night at Turf Moor and both will know the need to adapt is an urgent one.

Burnley come into the contest on a run of just one win in their last eight games and the resurgence of Fulham means they are just five points above the relegation zone.

They will again be without Ashley Barnes and Johann Berg Gudmundsson but at least Chris Wood is fit again and after Sunday's chastening defeat at Tottenham, a match which saw Wood play for the first time in a month as a substitute, you'd imagine Sean Dyche will be extremely keen to get his star striker back in the starting XI.

Expect the Burnley boss to focus on the basics again, knowing Leicester are vulnerable right now.

His men gave Spurs way too much space at the weekend and paid a heavy price - they conceded three times in the first half with the game effectively over after 30 minutes.

It was defending not usually associated with the Clarets and Dyche will be all too aware of the dangers of given Jamie Vardy space in behind. Expect a more compact Burnley here.

Barnes out, Evans doubtful

Leicester's injury woes are even worse and threaten to undermine their excellent season so far.
Playmaker James Maddison is a huge miss, while the defence has been rocked in recent weeks by injuries to Wesley Fofana and James Justin.

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Harvey Barnes joined the absentees, damaging his knee during Sunday's 3-1 home defeat to Arsenal, a game which also left Jonny Evans struggling. He's another who could miss out.

Given the situation, it's not hugely surprising that the Foxes' form has dipped. They've now won just one of their last four in all competitions. Defeat here would see Brendan Rodgers lose three in a row for the first time since taking charge at the King Power Stadium and set the alarm bells ringing about a repeat of last season which saw Leicester throw away a top-four finish with a bad run-in.

Rodgers 1280.jpg

Rodgers could do without a Vardy goal drought right now but the former England striker is currently on a run of just one goal in his last 12 matches.

Foxes tempting at odds-against

The Foxes do at least bring a mighty away record to the table here - nine wins and three draws from 13 games - and that will certainly be enough for some to back them at 2.12 to win the game.

Yet there were worrying signs against both Slavia Prague last Thursday and Arsenal, games which saw just one goal scored and five conceded. The Gunners, in particular, got too much joy in attacking terms.

Whether Burnley will be good enough to take advantage - they are 4.2 for the win - is open to debate.

Turf Moor goal drought

They couldn't beat 10-man West Brom in their last home game and were poor at Spurs.

I would, however, expect a reaction from Dyche's men, who do usually make themselves hard to beat.

You can usually rely on a lack of goals at Turf Moor - it's the ground which has seen fewer goals than any other in the Premier League this season, just 24 in 13 games.

Under 2.5 goals has landed in 10 of those matches but at 1.78 that option looks correctly priced.

With renewed focus on defence by the hosts and Leicester shorn of attacking talent - Ayoze Perez is another out at present - I would reach for that side of the line.

Returning Wood can strike again

However, in search of a bigger price I'm going to take a chance on Chris Wood in the first goalscorer market at 6.2.

The New Zealander has scored in his last three league appearances against his old club, including the reverse fixture in September.

Leicester won 4-2 that day against a team ravaged by injury but Wood caused plenty of problems, scoring one and hitting the woodwork.

Having sat out for much of the Clarets' current barren spell, he'll be desperate to make an impact and I very much expect Burnley to revert to type and get balls in quickly to their centre forward. Wood is astute at getting on the end of crosses and Dwight McNeil usually provides him with good delivery.

Up against a makeshift defence which could also now be without its leader in Evans, and playing in a game which looks likely to produce few goals, Wood looks a decent shout at the price.

Shots trend worth noting

There's also a bet I like in the shots market.

Cengiz Under has had 3+ shots in 10 of his 11 competitive starts for club and country this season, yet he's available at 6/4 to repeat the trick here, this despite Burnley giving up more shots than all bar two top-flight teams.

Under has generally not been trusted by Rodgers in the Premier League but it's now a case of needs must with so many players out and I can see Under getting the call in the wake of Sunday's defeat.

As the stat suggests, the Turk loves to get a shot off and is pretty good at finding the target too. In six of those 11 starts he's landed at least two shots on target. That option is offered at a tasty-looking 4/1 here and is worth backing if Under is a starter on the hosts' teamsheet.

Given the bet stands if he comes on as sub, waiting for the team news is advised.

Opta fact

Burnley have won three of their last four home league games against Leicester (L1), more than they had in their previous 13 against them at Turf Moor (W2 D3 L8).

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