Burnley will put pay to Tractor Boys play-off push if they beat them
Until recently, only Championship winners Leicester City had won at fellow promoted side Burnley. Middlesbrough came to Turf Moor earlier in April, defended doggedly and snatched a 1-0 victory, however.
It is this blueprint that play-off hopefuls Ipswich Town must copy, in order to keep their hopes of a top six finish (8/1) alive. Punters can be sanguine about their chances in Lancashire, though, because they have failed to beat any of the current teams in that upper echelon away.
Sean Dyche’s Clarets start as 13/10 favourites for victory, while Mick McCarthy and the Tractor Boys are 2/1 shots to upset them. A draw is priced at 12/5.
Burnley have won this home fixture in each of the previous two seasons, and three of the last five meetings, to nil, so 16/5 on that are certainly attractive when you consider they boast the best defence in this division.
Ipswich and their hosts both have hugely respectable failed to score records, however, which may belie that defensive solidity here. The Clarets have drawn a blank on only seven occasions, while visitors Town have seen their attack blunted nine times.
These are among the best performances for grabbing goals in the Championship, so punters must be prepared to consider the alternative win and both teams score market. Burnley are 18/5 here, and the Tractor Boys out at 5/1.
Dyche will be looking to striker Ashley Barnes, two in his last four, and winger Michael Kightly, two in as many outings, for goals again here. Former Brighton man Barnes once bagged a brace against Ipswich, and odds of 8/1 say he can repeat that feat here, while he is a safer 6/4 in the anytime market.
Kightly, meanwhile, could haunt McCarthy, his former boss at old club Wolves, by scoring with odds of 5/2. Versatile midfielder Scott Arfield, who netted the winner in the reverse fixture, is 11/4 to be on target again.
In the absence of top scorer David McGoldrick, Republic of Ireland forward Daryl Murphy remains Ipswich’s best bet for a goal. He is 7/4 anytime after four in eight, but grabbed the opener when the Tractor Boys last toppled the Clarets, and is a more attractive 13/2 to be on target first.
Another avenue for McCarthy is wide players. A winger has netted in each of Town’s last two outings. Paul Anderson is 7/2 anytime, while Stephen Hunt and Anthony Wordsworth are 4/1 shots in that market.
Burnley must also beware set pieces. Ipswich centre halves Christophe Berra and Tommy Smith have each chipped in with five goals. They are outside shouts at 7/1 and 11/2 respectively to add to their tallies at Turf Moor.