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Friday, May 17, 2024

Manchester United v Burnley: Old Trafford trip is an ‘opportunity’ says Kompany

Vincent Kompany feels Saturday’s trip to Manchester United provides an “opportunity” for his side to edge closer to Premier League survival.

Burnley’s hopes of beating the drop received a major boost last weekend with a 4-1 win at fellow strugglers Sheffield United that moved them within three points of 17th-placed Nottingham Forest.

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And with a visit to United no longer carrying the fear factor it once did, Kompany believes the short trip to Old Trafford is one that could prove fruitful for his side.

He said: “It’s game by game. As I’ve said from the beginning, just give us one opportunity to fight for something. That’s all we need.

“It feels like that on Saturday. It’s one game that gives us an opportunity and that’s enough for us.”

Burnley’s last four games are difficult. After United come Newcastle, Tottenham and, on the final day, Forest.

The Clarets have spent the bulk of the season in the bottom three but Kompany hopes they can drag themselves out by the end of the season.

He added: “We’ve been so close for a while now. In the end that’s the reward for the work you do. You get to celebrate for a bit [after the win over Sheffield United] but on Monday you have to build for a really important week.

“I don’t analyse the situation at the bottom, I analyse what we need to do for the next game, and I know we still have a chance [to stay up].

“I understand every weekend can bring such a shift, and I’d like it to keep tilting our way.

“It’s just consistency and hard work, making sure you ignore the noise. It’s a very calm club. We’ve been allowed to work and we’ve been putting in the hours to improve the players and ourselves as staff, so why should we doubt it’s possible to do that.”

As a former Manchester City player, Kompany has a good record at Old Trafford but he knows he has to transmit that self-belief to his squad.

“It’s different eras, different teams and different players,” he said. “For me, the fact you’ve been there so many times, as a manager you do keep that experience that you had as a player.

“But it’s not the case for my players so I have to somehow transfer something into them so that they feel like this is a game they belong to play in and that they have a chance to win as well.

“It always will be [a stand-out fixture], their history will always command that. It’s the type of game you want to play and I think everybody in this league looks forward to playing against the top teams and Manchester United is one of those.”

Jon Fisher
Jon Fisher
Jon has over 20 years' experience in sports journalism having worked at the Press Association, Goal and Stats Perform, covering three World Cups, an Olympics and numerous other major sporting events.
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