De-ja-vu for Sean Dyche in 100th Premier League game as Burnley boss

Sean Dyche's 100th game in the Premier League ended just how his first had - with defeat to a Jose Mourinho side at Turf Moor.

Saturday, 20th January 2018, 5:10 pm
Updated Monday, 22nd January 2018, 3:25 pm
Burnley boss Sean Dyche in his 100th Premier League game in charge of the club.

The Burnley boss's first taste of the top flight came against eventual champions Chelsea where goals from Diego Costa, Andre Schurrle and Branislav Ivanovic cancelled out Scott Arfield's opener.

The Portuguese coach, in his second stint with the Blues at the time, came out on top again as Anthony Martial scored the decider in a close encounter.

While there wasn't much to choose between the two teams it was arguably the hosts who were the brighter in the first half.

Burnley boss Sean Dyche in his 100th Premier League game in charge of the club.

James Tarkowski, who missed the reverse fixture at Old Trafford on Boxing Day through suspension, has never scored for the Clarets and the defender would've been kicking himself in the dressing room at the interval having wasted a golden opportunity to change that.

The former Brentford centre back, who netted twice in the Championship for the Bees, should have made David De Gea work when getting goal side of his marker to get on the end of Steven Defour's set-piece, but he steered his header well wide.

United were under the cosh again when the home side's high press caught £90m Frenchman Paul Pogba out in the defensive third but, after Phil Jones had foiled Ashley Barnes, midfielder Jeff Hendrick could only stroke the ball timidly at De Gea.

Sean Dyche's side had struggled to contain the pace of Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park in their last Premier League outing, but the away side's creative contingent barely had a sniff in the opening 45 minutes.

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho.

Pogba had an opportunity early on when getting a toe to Ashley Young's cross but goalkeeper Nick Pope only had to watch as the ball looped over the crossbar.

It was Burnley who were slowly increasing the 'shots on target' count though nothing went close to testing De Gea.

Johann Berg Gudmundsson found the Spaniard's gloves when shifting on to his left boot to shrug off the attentions of Jones while Hendrick skewed wide of the upright when Charlie Taylor's delivery dropped for him at the back post.

United crafted a couple of openings at the end of the half but they failed to ask questions of Pope.

Burnley boss Sean Dyche in his 100th Premier League game in charge of the club.

Young made a chance for himself when squeezing in-between Tarkowski and former Red Devil Phil Bardsley to break in to the box from the left hand side only to bend the ball around the far post.

Then, with the whistle placed in referee Mike Dean's mouth, Martial side-footed an attempt wide of the upright after trading passes with Pogba on the edge of the penalty area.

However, Burnley have never won in the 49 games where they have conceded first under Dyche in this division.

And that statistic naturally caused concern when United netted with their first shot on target.

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho.

Romelu Lukaku had been anonymous throughout but it was the strength and determination of Defour's international team-mate that made the opener.

The Belgian forward held off a number of challenges to retain possession before picking out Martial unmarked on the angle of the area.

The one-time Monaco forward picked his head up before firing home off the underside of the bar.

The Clarets, though, responded positively and they'll be left scratching their heads as to how they didn't salvage at least a point from the game.

Gudmundsson clipped the bar with a free kick after Barnes was brought down by Juan Mata and the winger's header from Taylor's centre was blocked by Chris Smalling.

De Gea was then forced to turn Ben Mee's dipping header over the bar as the hosts threatened from another set-piece.

Dyche's side had been falling on the right side of those slender margins earlier in the campaign but those fine differentials seem to be going against them at present.

It was the slightest of touches from Smalling that took the ball away from Tarkowski at full stretch after Gudmundsson had fired low across goal.

Barnes guided a header wide when making a great run to meet Defour's clipped pass and substitute Sam Vokes flicked wide under pressure from Marouane Fellaini from Gudmundsson's corner.

It just wasn't to be for the Clarets, who survived a late scare when a strong hand from Pope denied Martial his second of the afternoon from a United counter attack.