Premier League Preview: Burnley v Aston Villa

Paul Lambert has rued Aston Villa's list of absentees as they aim to end an eight-match Premier League winless run at Burnley on Saturday.

The visitors come into the clash at Turf Moor on the back of a torrid run of form, with only two points to show from those eight outings, after taking 10 points from their first four league encounters this term.

Villa came close to ending their winless sequence on Monday, but Nathaniel Clyne's 81st-minute equaliser rescued a 1-1 draw for second-placed Southampton at Villa Park.

Lambert - who took charge of the club for the 100th time against Southampton - has not been helped by injuries to key players, while Christian Benteke serves the last of a three-match suspension this weekend following his red card against Tottenham.

As well as the Belgian striker, Lambert is without the defensive trio of Ron Vlaar (calf), Philippe Senderos (calf) and Nathan Baker (knee), as well as midfielder Fabian Delph (shoulder) and forward Libor Kozak (broken leg).

"Everybody is the same. They are doing well but no-one will return," said Lambert on Thursday. "It's more or less the same as Monday against Southampton.

"It's Vlaar's calf, not what is was the last time. It's a strain. It's the same calf but a different part.

"Philippe has a calf problem and it's Christian's last game banned. Fabian is doing well in his rehab but is a few weeks away. Nathan will be out for longer.

"Six players out for our club is hard. If you lose six players even if you're a top club it's a big, big chunk."

Tom Heaton, meanwhile, wants Burnley to use the underdog tag to their advantage as they look to continue a recent resurgence.

The goalkeeper has been an ever-present in the league for Sean Dyche's men this season, and his first clean sheet in six matches helped the team to their maiden win of the campaign, a 1-0 triumph over Hull City before the international break.

Burnley made it back-to-back victories on their return to action last weekend, surprising many by defeating Stoke City 2-1 at the Britannia Stadium thanks to an early brace from Danny Ings.

They will go in search of three consecutive Premier League wins for the first time in their history when they welcome Villa, and Heaton believes being unfancied can work to their advantage.

"That’s something we've talked about," he told reporters. "It's something we try and use. You can be successful, I think, if you use that underdog tag.

"It's difficult for teams, they don't quite know what to expect. We're new into the league so we like to think we're going to make it difficult for everyone.

"It's always nice to prove the doubters wrong. We've got internal expectation, but externally there is probably isn't an awful lot.

"It depends which way you look at it. We try not to let it affect us. We've still got to go and do our job and we go about our business well and the manager is great for that."

The hosts welcome Scott Arfield back into contention after he missed the Stoke game with a knock, while Dyche revealed on Thursday that Michael Duff is a fitness doubt after hobbling off at the Britannia.

Matt Taylor (Achilles) remains a long-term absentee, while Sam Vokes (knee) is still out, despite making a goalscoring return for the development squad on Tuesday.