'Almost certain' - Garth Crooks makes major Burnley claim, names Claret in team of the week
BBC pundit Garth Crooks has claimed that Burnley are “almost certain” to retain their Premier League status this season following their 2-1 win over Everton at the weekend.
The Clarets extended the gap between themselves and the bottom three to seven points thanks to goals from Chris Wood and Dwight McNeil, and Crooks saw fit to include the latter in his team of the week.
Speaking to BBC Sport, he said: “Burnley had only won three league games away from home all season and I was certainly not expecting them to win their fourth away at Goodison.
"This was not Everton's finest hour by any stretch of the imagination and the absence of Abdoulaye Doucoure isn't helping either.
“However, this was about a Burnley side that has got over the club's boardroom politics and rediscovered its appetite for the battle on the pitch. They now look almost certain to retain their status at least for another season in the top flight.
"Two fabulous strikes sealed this game for the Clarets. I must say the goal from Dwight McNeil was a bit special.”
Crooks wasn’t the only pundit impressed with McNeil’s contribution.
Speaking on Sky Sports’ Football Show on Monday, former England international Sue Smith said: “He was absolutely brilliant against Everton.
"Maybe this season he hasn’t hit the heights he would have wanted, but I think it just shows that when he is in form, Burnley are in form.
"He was a huge influence. I thought his goal was absolutely top class. Absolutely fantastic.
"He caused all sorts of problems for Everton. I thought he was brilliant.”