Dan Black's verdict: Burnley continue to make it look as easy as one, two, three as they close in on Championship title
As easy as one, two, three!
Burnley have scored three or more goals in over a third of their Championship games to date.
The 3-1 win over Hull City at the MKM Stadium was the 14th time in 37 fixtures they'd hit a treble.
More than half of the division have suffered at the hands of the league leaders when it comes down to that particular habit.
The Tigers joined a list that includes Wigan Athletic (x2), Blackpool, Swansea City, Sunderland, Rotherham United, Blackburn Rovers, QPR, Middlesbrough, Birmingham City, Norwich City, Preston North End and Huddersfield Town.
It's been a happy hunting ground for the Clarets in the past, winning six of their previous eight visits, while the only defeat in the last 15 years spawned a 23-game unbeaten run that led to the title.
The latest success, as is now the norm, prompted opposition manager Liam Rosenior to declare his admiration for the table toppers, with the former England Under 21 international claiming that they are the best outfit he's seen in this division in the past decade.
"In terms of their ability, their movement, their rotations, their energy, their intensity – that’s the benchmark for this league," he said.
"I think they’re the best team I’ve seen – I’ve seen a lot of games at this level, a lot of teams – they’re one of the best teams I’ve seen in the last 10 years at this level, if not the best.
"For what I believe in the way football should be played and I make no apologies – I think that is a team that plays football the right way with the right mentality – to be brave to take the ball, to press, to have energy, to express themselves.
"And that’s the level that I want to aspire to while being at this club."
The former Fulham and Reading defender, who signed for both just after their record-breaking hauls in the second tier, did, however, fall into the trap of trying to better Burnley at being, well, Burnley.
The champions in waiting might just be the benchmark for this division, they might even be a point of reference for a handful of clubs in the top flight, but attempting to fight fire with fire, against the best in the business, is only going to burn.
You have to salute Rosenior's dedication in getting his side to play football, he has them unbeaten in seven on home soil, and only once in 15 games prior to Burnley's visit had his team shipped two or more goals in a game.
However, on Cheltenham Festival week, the term 'horses for courses' springs to mind, with teams surely needing to deploy a 'Plan B' when it comes to facing an opponent of the Clarets' calibre, and one that holds a 34-point superiority for a reason.
Very few can match the energy, intensity and effectiveness of Burnley's press, and even fewer have the qualifications to play through it. But, despite how many times the ball was turned over, or hurriedly put out of play, City persevered.
As a result they had their roar silenced, their claws clipped and their bite nullified, to an extent, as hat-trick hero Nathan Tella made them pay.
The visitors came at Hull from all angles, suffocating Callum Elder on the left hand side while causing captain Lewie Coyle to feel almost claustrophobic when Ian Maatsen continued to telegraph and intercept passes into the dangerous Malcolm Ebiowei.
Alfie Jones almost put the ball into his own net when Tella fired the first warning shot from Vitinho's pass while, from the opposite side, it required a tremendous last-ditch challenge from Sean McLoughlin to prevent Ashley Barnes from opening the scoring.
Tella couldn't quite flick Vitinho's cross on target with 10 minutes of the first half remaining, but he made no mistake on the stroke of half-time after Elder misjudged Hjalmar Ekdal's pass forward.
The ex-Arsenal academy ace collected the ball inside the area, chopped back on to his left foot, sending McLoughlin to ground in the process, and smashed a low shot past Karl Darlow at his near post.
The home side had threatened in the first half when ditching their more measured approach to get the ball forward and quickly, as Adama Traore headed wide from Elder's cross while Dimitrios Pelkas got it all wrong when supplied by the right boot of Allahyar.
And that's how they would trouble the Clarets after the break, by getting in their faces, closing the space, pressurising the centre backs, and hanging the ball into the box.
Traore and Ebiowei failed to make sufficient contact with Elder's deep cross, substitute Oscar Estupinan flicked wide having beaten Arijanet Muric to Allahyar's assist, before the Kosovan keeper narrowed the angle at his near post to deny Ebiowei, who had forced his way into the penalty area.
The forward, on loan from Crystal Palace, then had Burnley in disarray on the edge of their own 18-yard box when Muric's clearance landed at his feet, only for Josh Cullen to take the sting out of the 19-year-old's effort.
However, on the hour, Tella doubled the lead. The quick-thinking combination of Anass Zaroury and Barnes provided the incision, taking Ebiowei, Greg Docherty and Jean Michael Seri out of the equation, to release Maatsen, and his spectacular delivery was converted by Burnley's leading marksman.
Kompany, however, admitted that he would have to watch the goal back, as his mind was 10 seconds ahead, in preparation for the worst case scenario, should City have cleared their lines and countered from Maatsen's cross.
He said: "I've got to review that goal! Usually the action is happening on the left and I'm thinking 'right, we're not going to concede now', so I'm looking down the right to make sure we're not giving the strikers too much space to counter on us.
"I do sometimes end up missing what's happening inside the box when we're attacking. I'll review the goal. It's something Ian has found in his game, he's dangerous from so many different positions, he can be out wide, he can be a little bit inside, what a modern full back should be for me."
And Kompany feels it is that sense of anticipation, which has filtered through to his players, that` has got them where they are this season. They might not be fortune tellers, but they've often been one step ahead of their opponents.
"In my opinion the best players are always sensing the opportunity and they're always sensing the danger," said Kompany. "It's that fine line in-between. There's an opportunity to go and break or they've got to sense the danger and prevent them from breaking on us.
"At the very top level that's what you get punished for, so that's why my habit is to always make sure that we can continue to maintain the attack, because eventually they'll do something.
"I can't tell them when to cross, I can't tell them when to dribble, I can't tell them when to step up, so that's where I trust their creativity."
Muric made another couple of saves either side of Tella's hat-trick finish, shifting his weight from right to left to keep out Ozan Tufan's strike and getting down well to thwart Estupinan.
The Clarets hadn't had it all their own way, but it had been a break away from the norm, whether consciously enforced or not, that had generated the home side's best moments.
Kompany recognised: "It was a difficult game in many aspects. We had to work really hard to recover the ball, we had to work hard in terms of getting out and playing forward, but in the end we created really good chances and it's normal that we do score a few goals because our team has been doing that consistently.
"It was a tough game, especially given the context that we knew Middlesbrough had lost points and we knew we had to do a job away from home on a Wednesday night. There were many ways this could've gone wrong, yet for us it didn't and I can be pleased with the performance.
"The team knows that they've got to use all these opportunities as a chance to get better. We need the games, it's not like we're getting tired of playing them. The more games, the more lessons, the better, the more experiences you can draw on.
"It felt like a difficult game, I can pinpoint different moments where I felt there were dangerous situations, but in the end we've got to be really happy with the result and many parts of the performance, but not everything!"
In the end, though, despite Tufan's hearty finish deep into stoppage time, the Clarets' quality shone through once more, making what would be a tough evening for most, look like a walk in the park at times.
Tella added his 19th of the season in all competitions when pouncing on Jacob Greaves' under-hit pass, intended for McLoughlin, and finishing past Darlow in the 73rd minute.
His second hat-trick of the season, adding to that against Lancashire rivals Preston North End at Turf Moor, is an unbelievable achievement in his breakthrough term, but Kompany appreciates his work ethic above and beyond everything else.
"He's been good," he concluded. "It's something I would say, in our team, is a non-negotiable. I don't think you can pick anybody in our team who doesn't put in the effort. He does that and he gets the goals, but without the effort, even with the goals, I wouldn't play a player. It's the effort and then the goals."