Talking points from an eventful evening at Carrow Road

It was something of an eventful evening at Carrow Road yesterday.
The screen at Carrow RoadThe screen at Carrow Road
The screen at Carrow Road

And after digesting the various talking points on a rather tedious drive home, here are a few thoughts on a 2-0 victory, as Burnley extended their run to one defeat in 15 Premier League games.


Before I look at the red cards, bear in mind that Burnley have had one player dismissed since Jeff Hendrick was dismissed at Watford in February 2017.

Norwich had two sent off in 45 minutes yesterday.

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However, Canaries boss Daniel Farke said: “I have many problems to be honest.

"I am not accusing them because this is maybe how a Premier League side, which is experienced, reacts.

"It is not for me to accuse anyone else, just to look in the mirror. They tried to provoke us.”

So he is looking at the mirror and not accusing Burnley, but accusing them of provoking his players?

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The home press were aghast at the physicality of the Clarets, and the ‘chippy’ nature of the dugout.

But the Clarets’ discipline is exemplary, as their record proves.

They play hard, but fair. They rarely cross the line into the dark arts, but they are experienced and streetwise enough, as Farke noted, to be able to look after themselves.

I don’t think they were laying a trap that Norwich walked into, but if the Canaries are as naive as they showed yesterday, it is little wonder they are facing an immediate return to the Championship.

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As Sean Dyche said after similar accusations of a ‘dirty’ Burnley side at Bournemouth in December: table.

“We want the team, make no mistake, to play hard, and to play fair, simple as that.

“In old money, that’s how it used to be, it’s never an old-fashioned thing, I heard Chris Wilder speaking about the same thing, that he wanted them to compete and compete hard, but try and do it right and be fair.

“I get on with Chris, we’ve spoken about it, if that’s old-fashioned then I’m happy to be old-fashioned because they’re qualities any team should have.

“Hard and fair should be perfectly reasonable.

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“We’ll carry on trying to play hard-ish, as we’re allowed, and play fair."


My first instinct when Emi Buendia got in a tangle with Ashley Westwood and petulantly moved his elbow towards the back of his neck and head, was that ‘he’s off here’.

It’s fair to say the local press wasn’t in agreement, although some have since amended their opinion.

But while Westwood clearly made a meal of any contact, the Argentine gave referee Kevin Friend a decision to make, and the only likely outcome was a red card.

It was sheer petulance.

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And Josep Drmic displayed staggering stupidity to then recklessly, and out of control, clatter Erik Pieters.

That one didn’t look as bad on replays as in real time, but for former Norwich striker - they never have former Clarets in TV studios do they? - Efan Ekoku to suggest that was a yellow card offence was ludicrous.

Again, Friend had little option.

Striker’s challenge? Frustration? Whatever possessed Drmic, it was utter madness.


Only Ashley Westwood will know for certain whether he enhanced the impact of the elbow from Buendia - to me, he makes sure the officials see something has happened, and goes over a little easily.

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One of the local press mused what Dyche would think of it, given his stance against simulation.

But Dyche has always used the caveat: “I’m not talking about getting a touch and going down, I’m talking about absolutely clear people diving on the floor.”

Would the opposition do similar if a Burnley player used his elbow like that? I’d imagine the percentage would be approaching 100%.

In the last two games, we have seen honesty from Burnley players go unrewarded - Josh a Brownhill tried to stay on his feet and get his shot away after seemingly being hauled back by Romain Saiss against Wolves, and Jay Rodriguez took on the shot at Carrow Road after being caught, when he could have gone to ground.

Westwood made sure the incident was looked at.

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As Dyche said: “The game is so weak physically now, you can't touch anybody, so they go down.

"If that's the case, if you do raise your elbow to someone's head, or face, you've got a chance of getting sent off.”


That Burnley scored the opener from the free kick once Norwich had gone down to nine men was critical.

The timing was key, in stoppage time in the first half.

As the Clarets would find in the second half, two deep banks of four are hard to break down.

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Burnley have seen that before, memorably at Brighton in December 2011, when only a screamer from Kieran Trippier breached Gus Poyet’s defence, and the Seagulls could have nicked a late equaliser.

You have to move the ball quicker than Burnley did, and while Dwight McNeil looked to get on the ball and show that piece of individual brilliance to unlock the hosts, or work that killer give and go, Norwich proved stubborn.

The Clarets crossed the ball time and again, and while that produced the second goal, as Ben Godfrey sliced the ball into his own net, it was largely meat and drink to the Canaries.

That said, Tim Krul ended up making a number of fine stops to keep the score down.


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Nick Pope came away with a 15th clean sheet of the season to go back in front in the race for the Golden Gloves with one game to go.

But while he was a virtual spectator for most of the game, you have to take your hat off to his levels of concentration - another mark of a good goalkeeper.

He made one early stop from Godfrey from a corner, but, having just gone 2-0 up, Pope made a superb intervention to prevent Onel Hernandez’s deflected effort looping in.

When a keeper isn’t involved in proceedings, to make sure you are still a part of the game and influencing things, communication is vital.

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And Pope’s voice was probably the clearest ringing out around Carrow Road, as Dyche joked after: “At the end there he's screaming at the two centre halves to get back from a corner, so he's obviously aware of the record!”

Whether he was issuing encouragement or instruction, Pope showed his game is about far more than his positioning or shot stopping.

You could always hear Tom Heaton, even when grounds were full, but Pope has not only taken over the number one jersey from the former skipper, but his status as something of an on-field manager and organiser.