The Clarets Are Champions!
An unbeaten 2016 from Sean Dyche’s side has rewarded the Clarets with the Sky Bet Championship title!
Eight wins in the last 11 away games, in a staggering post-war record of 23 unbeaten league fixtures saw the Clarets return to the Premier League in style!
And following the comprehensive 3-0 win at relegated Charlton, there was symmetry to the promotion two years ago, as Sean Dyche’s side ended the season on 93 points, the same tally as the 2013/14 season, with the same number of wins, draws and defeats!
Sam Vokes gave the Clarets the early lead, scoring his 16th goal of the season, before George Boyd doubled the lead early on in the second half.
And a minute later Andre Gray sealed the rout with a fine solo goal to chalk up his 25th of the campaign.
Both sides created numerous chances in the first half, and the Clarets came the close early on with a lovely swift move.
Matthew Lowton cut inside and found Scott Arfield at the edge of the box.
The Canadian cleverly flicked on first-time to Vokes to his left, however the forward couldn’t steer the curling effort on target.
The league’s top scorer Andre Gray then came inches away from the opener, following good work down the right flank from George Boyd.
Gray turned his man in the box, aiming for the near post, however the fizzing strike could only find the side netting.
However the Clarets took the lead two minutes later, moments after Middlesbrough took the lead at the Riverside!
Dean Marney found Stephen Ward to his left, who played a neat one two with Arfield, and after a touch from Arfield, the full-back perfectly found the lurking Vokes with a low cross that the Welshman gobbled up.
However, it took three stunning saves from the Clarets’ captain to ensure the lead was still intact.
Johan Gudmundsson’s solo run ended with an arrowing strike from distance that the ever-reliable stopper clawed to safety.
And Gudmundsson’s next effort was equally as impressive, striking from 20-yards to Heaton’s left and forcing another fine save from the Clarets goalkeeper.
Charlton then countered from a Burnley corner, and worked into a two-on-one situation, with Lookman bursting forward.
He squared to Harriott with just Heaton to beat, but again Burnley’s captain came to the rescue and kept the Clarets ahead going into the break.
And minutes into the second half Boyd doubled Burnley’s advantage!
Following good work from Gray and Arfield, Ward again provided the cross to the near post, where Gray’s flick on fell to Boyd in acres of space at the back post.
And the winger composed himself and smashed in Burnley’s second with a deadly finish.
And the party really started 60 seconds later, when Burnley were home and hosed!
Dean Marney, making his 200th Clarets appearance after returning to starting line-up after a hamstring injury, wonderfully played Gray in-on goal.
The striker collected at the corner of box, drove towards goal and, from a tight angle, fired through Nick Pope’s legs to five the Clarets an unassailable three-goal lead.
Ben Mee’s late header denied Harriott a consolation for Charlton, before the Clarets made their final sub of the afternoon.
Michael Duff, who is out of contract with the club this summer, came on for a late cameo appearance to help the Clarets see out a memorable victory and afternoon.
Burnley: Heaton; Lowton, Keane (Duff 81), Mee, Ward; Boyd, Marney, Barton, Arfield (Dyer 74); Vokes (Barnes 64), Gray
Subs: Robinson, Jones, Taylor, Tarkowski.
Charlton: Pope, Vetokele. Kashi (Ba 88), Gudmundsson (Jackson 66), Teixeira, Fanni, Lookman, Cousins, Fox, Diarra, Harriott (Suk-Young 83)
Subs: Sarr, Mitov, Motta, Makienok