Hull City-Burnley: Premier League Preview

Brian RhodesSenior Analyst IApril 9, 2010

BURNLEY, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 31:  Stephen Hunt, Andy Dawson and Deiberson Geovanni of Hull City line up a free kick during the Barclays Premier League match between Burnley and Hull City at Turf Moor on October 31, 2009 in Burnley, England.  (Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)
Matthew Lewis/Getty Images

Premier League Preview: Hull City Vs Burnley, Kingston Communication Stadium, Kingston upon Hull, England, Saturday 10 April 2010, 15:00 BST

In football, it is often mentioned that a game is a "six-pointer," and this is never more appropriate than for this fixture. The points up for grabs at Hull City's KC Stadium could be the difference between Premier League survival and playing in the Championship next season, for both clubs.

Brian Laws brings his Burnley side to East Yorkshire on the back of a confidence-sapping 6-1 mauling from a rampant Manchester City side. The Clarets are without a win since early February, when they beat West Ham in their only Premiership victory of 2010.

The Tigers, despite a loss to Stoke City last week, have high spirits after the arrival of Iain Dowie in Hull.

With one win in three outings for Dowie's Hull City team, Dowie will be hoping to kick on from the disappointment of last week, where his makeshift defence conceded early from a Paul McShane error and further fell behind after the team was knocked down to 10 men.

Tigers Captain George Boateng was unfortunate enough to get a boot to the face from Tuncay Sanli after the Stoke City striker made an attempt at an audacious overhead bicycle kick, making contact with the Dutchman's head.

Boateng was stretchered off with a suspected broken jaw but luckily only ended up with a mild concussion. Dowie says that Boateng has a "45 percent" chance of being fit for the important Burnley game.

The Tigers will still be without Stephen Hunt, who is struggling to overcome a foot problem, but Ibrahima Sonko could make a return to the injury ravaged defense after parent club Stoke City blocked his participation in last week's clash.

Burnley will be hoping that club Captain Steve Caldwell is fully recovered from a long-standing groin injury that has sidelined him since December. However, midfielder Stephen Jordan will have to go through a late fitness test with his knee injury.

Laws's main problem in the buildup to the clash is the recent outburst by Joey Gudjonsson, the Icelandic midfielder, who has gone on record stating that the Clarets boss has lost the dressing room.

He told Icelandic website, , "He lost the dressing room long ago."

Further he said, "I think all the players have lost faith in him, the performances say all that has to be said."

He went on, "This shows that the guys do not believe in what he is doing, this just does not seem to work out."

With the unrest in the Burnley camp, Hull City and Dowie will be hoping to capitalise and keep the club's 100 percent win record at the KC since Dowie's appointment.

However, the Tigers will be cautious of the backlash that they could receive from the wounded Clarets after last week's dismal performance.