Burnley 0-2 Crystal Palace: Turf Moor woes continue as improved Clarets suffer another costly defeat
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Roy Hodgson’s side offered virtually nothing all afternoon, yet took all three points home with them thanks to Jeffrey Schlupp’s first-half strike before Tyrick Mitchell added a second deep into stoppage-time.
The Clarets were much improved in terms of their overall performance, controlling the game and producing multiple attempts on goal.
But they were unable to convert that pressure into goals, with Palace keeper Sam Johnstone producing a string of fine stops to earn a clean sheet.
Vincent Kompany’s men have now lost five consecutive games in all competitions and nine of their 11 league games.
The Clarets were boosted by the return of Jordan Beyer, who came straight back into the starting line-up after spending a month on the sidelines.
Kompany opted to make three changes in total from Burnley’s last league outing, the 2-1 defeat to Bournemouth.
Josh Cullen dropped out through suspension, having collected five yellow cards, while Ameen Al-Dakhil and Anass Zaroury also dropped out. Al-Dakhil wasn’t even named among the substitutes.
Sander Berge and Jay Rodriguez came into the starting line-up alongside Beyer.
Burnley are still having to get by without Lyle Foster, who missed out through illness for the third game running.
Kompany confirmed during his pre-match press conference that the striker could even be missing against Arsenal next week.
Hjalmar Ekdal and Manuel Benson both missed out as they’re still working their way back from injury, although they did feature for the club’s Under-21 side earlier in the day.
Michael Obafemi, who has been sidelined with a serious hamstring injury since June, also featured in the academy outing.
Kompany also confirmed on Friday that Aaron Ramsey is currently unavailable due to a knock.
As for Palace, they named an unchanged side from their 2-1 defeat to Tottenham, although they were boosted by the return of Eberechi Eze to the bench.
What Burnley needed to inspire the home faithful was a positive start and they got it, with Zeki Amdouni heading wide from Johann Gudmundsson’s cross inside the opening 60 seconds.
The Clarets were straight onto the front foot, pressing Palace high up the pitch and dictating the tempo of the early exchanges.
There was an intensity and a zip to their game and, shock horror, the fans responded in kind with their backing from the terraces.
Burnley’s players were adamant Palace ought to have been reduced to 10 men in the 16th minute when Odsonne Edouard cynically fouled James Trafford as the keeper looked to play the ball out of his six-yard box, only to be booked.
In a moment that summed up Burnley’s season, the visitors then opened the scoring with their first effort on goal.
It all came from a Burnley error though, the returning Beyer to be specific, as he was outmuscled before slipping allowing Jordan Ayew to put the ball on a plate for Jeffrey Schlupp, who had the simple task of steering home from close range.
Despite the anxiety among the home faithful, not helped by Burnley working a free-kick in the Palace half all the way back to Trafford, the Clarets were unlucky not to level on the half-hour mark.
It came from a pinpoint Charlie Taylor cross, which Gudmundsson headed inches wide of the upright with Sam Johnstone scrambling desperately across his goal.
Luca Koleosho, Burnley’s biggest threat and by some distance in the first-half, almost got in down the left when he ran onto Taylor’s pinpoint chipped ball, but he wasn’t quite able to get a shot off at goal at the pivotal moment.
The half ended with Koleosho stinging Johnstone’s palms with a rasping drive from range, before two Palace men - Marc Guehi and Joel Ward - were shown yellow cards for getting in the referee’s face after he blew for half-time.
The second-half got off to a very laboured start, with neither side showing much in the way of an attacking threat.
Burnley did come close to levelling matters on the hour mark though, with an opportunity created by Koleosho once again.
The winger beat Ward all ends up before pulling the ball back for Gudmundsson to drag a shot just wide of the far post.
The Clarets did have the ball in the back of the Palace net shortly afterwards when Jay Rodriguez fired high into the roof of the net after Amdouni’s strike had been deflected into his path, but the forward was well offside.
Another chance came and went with 15 minutes left on the clock, Koleosho blazing well over after being picked out in space by Rodriguez’s guided header.
Josh Brownhill was the next man to try his luck, seeing his dipping, swerving effort pushed behind by Johnstone.
The Palace keeper was kept busy from the resulting corner too, denying Rodriguez who got across his man to head towards goal, but Johnstone stood tall to make the snap save.
Kompany had no option to go for it in the final stages, throwing Mike Tresor on for centre-back Beyer, while Nathan Redmond and Wilson Odobert also came off the bench.
But it was Palace who added the game’s second goal, Tyrick Mitchell slotting home deep into stoppage time to rub further salt into Burnley’s wounds.
Burnley: Trafford, Vitinho, Beyer (Tresor), O’Shea, Taylor, Brownhill, Berge, Gudmundsson (Bruun Larsen), Koleosho (Odobert), Amdouni (Redmond), Rodriguez
Subs not used: Muric, Delcroix, Roberts, Massengo, Zaroury
Palace: Johnstone, Ward (Clyne), Andersen, Guehi, Mitchell, Doucoure (Eze), Hughes, Lerma, Schlupp (Ahamada), Ayew, Edouard (Richards)
Subs not used: Matthews, Franca, Riedewald, Holding, Mateta
Referee: Peter Bankes