Michael Owen is of the opinion that Burnley are going to edge out AFC Bournemouth in the FA Cup 5th round this week as the competition heads towards the business end.
The two sides both have quality in their ranks but it is the Clarets who Owen, a winner of the competition with Liverpool, fancies to make the quarter-finals.
Speaking in his predicition column for bookmaker Bet Victor, he mused:
“Burnley had to settle for a point at home to Brighton on Saturday whilst Bournemouth recorded their first win in five with a narrow win against Birmingham.
“That was Bournemouth’s first match since Jason Tindall left his position. Since then, Jonathan Woodgate and Harry Redknapp have been installed in the interim, so the duo will be looking for a fairy tale start here.
“That said, Bournemouth are in transition and they come up against a side that are very organised. With that in mind, I think Burnley will get through by a narrow margin.”
Bournemouth did well to respond against Birmingham at the weekend with the Blues putting them under pressure and Woodgate and Redknapp will be eager to try and build on that with a positive result against Burnley.
Clarets boss Sean Dyche may fancy a run at the cup, however, given the Premier League relegation battle is looking fairly settled at the moment – though he’ll obviously not want to risk a late collapse by mismanaging his squad.
However, at the moment, it does seem a game where he’ll look to play a strong side and that, combined with them being at home, might be enough to see Bournemouth off.
For the Cherries, it’s a game where they can go and try and express themselves away from the pressure of the play-off race and Woodgate and Redknapp will be trying to impress that on the players ahead of tonight’s 5:30 kick-off.