Burnley 0-1 Man Utd: Winless start to the season continues thanks to Bruno Fernandes' stunning strike
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The Clarets were by far the better side during the first-half in this televised Saturday night encounter, but were cruelly undone by a stunning Bruno Fernandes effort on the stroke of half-time.
That proved to be the game’s deciding goal, with the second-half turning out to be much more of a lethargic affair, with United able to slow the game down and frustrate Vincent Kompany’s men.
The Burnley boss will be able to pinpoint a number of positives once again, but his side now sit on just one point from their opening five games following a challenging start to the season in terms of fixtures.
But if they’re able to replicate their first-half performance and turn it into a regular 90-minute display, the Clarets should pose plenty of problems for their top flight rivals.
Kompany kept faith with the side that earned Burnley’s first point of the season in the 1-1 draw against Nottingham Forest.
He was forced into making one change, however, with Aaron Ramsey coming in for the suspended Lyle Foster to make his first league start of the season.
As for Foster, he will miss three games for the straight red card he was shown for violent conduct at the City Ground.
Hjalmar Ekdal (knee), Darko Churlinov (health scare) and Michael Obafemi (hamstring) all remain sidelined, while Dara O’Shea, Vitinho, Han-Noah Massengo and Nathan Redmond all missed out.
As for United, they made three changes to the side that lost 4-3 to Bayern Munich in the Champions League in midweek.
Lisandro Martinez, Christian Eriksen and Facundo Pellestri all dropped out, while Jonny Evans, Scott McTominary and Hannibal all came into Erik ten Hag’s side.
The likes of Harry Maguire and Mason Mount both missed out, while Antony and Jadon Sancho were both unavailable due to disciplinary issues.
It’s been a difficult start to the season for United, who had lost their last three games in all competitions heading into the fixture, but they looked bright enough from the off in this game, coming close through Marcus Rashford inside the opening 60 seconds.
The Clarets were dispossessed of possession close to their own box, allowing Marcus Rashford the opportunity to run towards goal but could only squeeze his shot into the side netting.
Another brief lapse in concentration was also pounced upon by the visitors in the seventh minute, with Rashford involved again. This time he slipped in Bruno Fernandes who brought a strong hand out of James Trafford in the Burnley goal.
Kompany’s men remained patient, however, putting trust in playing out from the back, which almost paid dividends when Connor Roberts delivered a cross for Zeki Amdouni which was well saved by Andre Onana, pushing the effort around his post for a corner.
While Burnley’s defending was a little tense, their attacking play was a joy to watch at times and United were unable to cope with it.
The Red Devils were given a major let-off on 17 minutes when Amdouni came within inches of giving Burnley the lead.
After being played in by Aaron Ramsey, Amdouni struck low and across Onana only to be cruelly denied by the inside of the post.
The Clarets were dealt a blow just a minute later when Johann Gudmundsson was forced off, presumingly with a knock, to be replaced by Mike Tresor.
It appeared salt was to be quickly rubbed into Burnley’s wound when United took the lead through a Jonny Evans header, only for the ‘goal’ to be disallowed for offside - with Rasmus Hojlund adjudged to be standing in an offside position right in front of Trafford.
It would have been against the run of play had the goal been allowed to stand, given Burnley’s spell of pressure, albeit the game did even itself out prior to half-time.
Ramsey did sting Onana’s palms three minutes before the interval, letting fly from outside the box following a quick give and go with Amdouni.
Burnley suffered a sucker-punch right on the stroke of half-time when Bruno Fernandes gave United the lead with a moment of real quality.
There wasn’t a great deal Burnley did wrong, as Jonny Evans clipped a clever ball which Fernandes swatted home with a sublime first-time volley, reminiscent almost of Marco Van Basten’s famous effort for the Netherlands.
Things could easily have got worse at the start of the second-half when Diogo Dalot flashed a dangerous low ball across the face of Burnley’s six-yard box. Hojlund almost reached it at full stretch, but thankfully he wasn’t able to make meaningful contact.
Just before the hour mark, Ameen Al-Dakhil produced a great bit of defending to deny Hojlund who was waiting to pounce on Marcus Rashford’s downward header.
In an attacking sense Burnley had been stifled by the visitors compared to the first-half, where they regularly got themselves into promising positions in the opposition half.
United, by comparison, produced some half chances but nothing too concerning, with Scott McTominary swinging his weaker left foot at the ball 20 yards from goal, but his shot was an easy one for Trafford to claim down low.
The game had been completely sapped of its tempo, with United happy to slow things down and frustrate their hosts.
Burnley were just beginning to appear a little tired, so Kompany freshened things up with 20 minutes remaining by making a triple change - introducing Sander Berge, Jacob Bruun Larsen and Jay Rodriguez off the bench.
The latter two were straight into the action, Bruun Larsen racing onto a clever ball over the top before being thwarted by Onana while Rodriguez was then brought to ground, but Burnley’s penalty appeals fell on deaf ears.
Fellow substitute Berge also got in on the action, heading over from a Josh Brownhill cross, albeit he didn’t know a great deal about it standing in a crowded six-yard box.
Burnley kept plugging away in search of a late equaliser but they weren’t able to carve that one final chance, resulting in Kompany’s men falling to a fourth straight defeat on home turf.
Burnley: Trafford, Roberts, Beyer, Al-Dakhil, Taylor, Cullen, Brownhill (Benson), Koleosho (Bruun Larsen), Gudmundsson (Tresor), Ramsey (Berge), Amdouni (Rodriguez)
Subs not used: Muric, Delcroix, Cork, Zaroury
Man Utd: Onana, Dalot, Lindelof, Evans (Amrabat), Reguilon (Varane), Casemiro, Mejbri, McTominay, Rashford, Fernandes, Hojlund
Subs not used: Bayindir, Gore, van de Beek, Pellestri, Eriksen, Garnacho, Martial
Referee: Tony Harrington