A Sam Vokes penalty and an own goal from Rob Jones saw the Clarets climb to the top of the Championship with a 2-0 triumph over Doncaster Rovers.
With QPR out of midweek action due to Wigan’s involvement in the Europa League on Thursday evening, the Clarets took full advantage and usurped Harry Redknapp’s
side at the summit courtesy of goal difference.
Clear cut opportunities were a rarity in a relatively lacklustre first half and though the hosts shaded possession, the Clarets remained a composed and well organised unit.
Federico Macheda, who had scored three goals in two games since being taken on loan by Paul Dickov, forced the first attempt on goal when forcing a route in to the area after Paul Quinn had glided past Ben Mee, but Tom Heaton saved with his legs at the near post.
Midway through the half full back Ben Mee fizzed an effort over the bar from 25 yards as the Clarets struggled to find a way through.
Macheda was booked for an over-exuberant challenge on Mee moments later while James Coppinger also went in to referee Roger East’s book for clipping Kieran Trippier with a high boot.
After the half-hour, the away side started to find their stride and combine neatly to open up their opponents.
First Vokes touched wide of the near post after Scott Arfield, Danny Ings and Trippier had combined in the build up. And then Jones was forced to clear over his own bar when under pressure from Vokes after Jason Shackell, Michael Kightly, Ings and Mee had all been involved.
Coppinger tested Heaton when cutting inside Trippier on the angle of the area, but the goalkeeper comfortably gathered the deflected effort.
In the final minute of the half, Ings found the pace to latch on to Heaton’s clearance but Turnbull reacted well to save at his feet.
Then, as the fourth official signalled two minutes of time added on, Jones needlessly conceded the penalty when pulling down Vokes. The striker picked himself up to coolly slot into Turnbull’s right corner, sending the keeper the wrong way to notch his seventh of the season.
After the break, the Clarets highlighted why they’re top of the pile with an impressive display that expertly opened up their opponents.
Vokes went close on the hour when squeezing between James Husband and Jones but, with Ings screaming for the ball in the area, the striker sliced wide of the near post.
Five minutes later Rovers should’ve been level and it was the previously potent Manchester United loan striker that was the culprit. Substitute Mark Duffy, who had replaced David Cotterill, swung in the cross, Bongani Khumalo headed back across goal, but as the space opened up for Macheda on the edge of the six yard box he lifted his effort over the bar.
Sean Dyche’s side were nimble off the ball, closing quickly and nipping in to steal possession before springing in to attack. And they went agonisingly close to adding a second when Kightly robbed Quinn, drove in to the area and squared for Ings who was thwarted by both Husband and Jones who blocked on the line.
After Macheda was once again denied by the legs of Heaton after turning cleverly inside the area, Dickov withdrew Keegan and introduced Theo Robinson to add another forward option.
However, rather than sitting on their lead, Sean Dyche’s side continued to press high up the pitch. Jones powered a header over for the home side from Coppinger’s corner but that was the last time Rovers would impact on the game.
With three minutes of normal time remaining Turnbull turned Arfield’s stinging drive around his post after Jones had played a threaded pass in behind Quinn.
Then, a minute later, the Clarets ended the fixture as a contest. Richie Wellens, who stood out for the hosts, was uncharacteristically caught ball watching as David Edgar claimed possession and the ball was eventually worked to Arfield who cleverly played in Trippier and the defender’s fierce effort ricocheted in to the net via Jones’s knee and the post.
But it didn’t end there. While 1,385 Clarets fans enjoyed the occasion at the Keepmoat Stadium, Turnbull saved well from Vokes after the striker was slipped in to the area by Edgar and the Rovers stopper had to be alert seconds later to stop substitute Keith Treacy’s stinging drive from the edge of the box.
Match photos provided by Dan Westwell