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03 February 2018 Venue Turf Moor Attendance

Kick off 12:30 (UK)

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Dyche Up For City Challenge

Boss ready to lock horns with the best and confirms Steven Defour absence

3 February 2018

Sean Dyche is relishing the chance to take on another Premier League ‘super power’ as leaders and champions-elect Manchester City roll into town.

Pep Guardiola’s big spenders have brushed aside almost everyone as they chase down an unprecedented quadruple.

City’s only domestic defeat has come against Liverpool and they are 15 points clear at the top of the table.

But the Clarets are enjoying their own landmark season. And having taken points from the other four members of the league’s top five, Dyche is looking forward to another big Turf Moor occasion in front of the live television cameras (kick-off 12.30pm).

“It’s another chance for us to take on one of the super-powers of the league. We have done well against them over the season,” said the Burnley boss

Ashley Barnes gave the Clarets an FA Cup lead at Manchester City 

“Manchester City are the best side, I think, this season and they have shown that, quite obviously. I think everyone agrees.

“They are a very powerful side, both home and away. But that’s what we love about football.

“We’ve seen it at Burnley and outside of Burnley. These challenges are there for you to take and we want the team to take on the challenge.

“I thought we were very good against Manchester United, at home and away. We had a really good go at these in the FA Cup, certainly for 60-65 minutes.

“We want to take on these games. Although they are hard games, I think it’s terrific for these teams to be visiting Turf Moor, for our fans to see them and, more importantly, see their own side challenge these teams like we have done.”

The Clarets were beaten 4-1 at City in the third-round of the Cup last month, having led at half-time.

That defeat contributed to a nine-match winless run in league and cup, which has slowed the Clarets’ momentum.

But Dyche’s side has taken points from four of their last five trips in the Premier League to remain in seventh place in the table.

“It’s a double-edged sword for us,” Dyche added. “In the shorter run of eight games that we haven’t had a win, we’ve equally had some very good points on the board away from home in that run, against some top sides.

“We’ve got 18 points away from home and we only got seven in a whole season last time, so that’s a big positive marker.

“Our home form remains very strong. We’ve had a couple of last-minute goals go against us within that run and a couple of big decisions.

“Like every manager, there will be a story behind the story. But, it remains a fact. We haven’t had a win in eight and we’ve got to correct that. And that’s our job.”

Meanwhile, Dyche has confirmed that midfielder Steven Defour is expected to miss the remainder of the campaign – and ‘probably’ the World Cup finals.

The Belgium international had been an outstanding performer for the Clarets but will undergo surgery on a knee injury next Monday.

“It is likely to be the season, I would think,” said Dyche.

“Credit to Steven. His mentality has been solid this year and he has played very well.

“He wanted to carry on with it. He had a sore knee but nothing major and he was getting on and managing it wisely over the last few weeks.

“It was only really a precautionary scan that showed there was some cartilage off his knee and he’s going to have to have that dealt with.

“Depending on what they do, it could be the season, and there’s a strong chance it will be the season.”

Defender James Tarkowski will also miss the visit of City as he continues his recovery from a groin injury, while City - who have dropped points only three times this season - will give a late fitness check to play-maker David Silva. Forwards Leroy Sane and Gabriel Jesus are definitely out.

Remember to download the Burnley FC App for the best minute to minute action, stats, team line-ups and much much more!

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Match Reports

Burnley 1 Manchester City 1

Johann Berg Gudmundsson goal caps superb fightback as Clarets hold leaders

3 February 2018

A wonderful late equaliser from Johann Berg Gudmundsson slowed Manchester City’s march to glory as the Clarets showed again they can live the best.

Danilo’s first-half strike had City heading for an 11th away win of a remarkable season that will surely end with them lifting the Premier League title.

But whereas Pep Guardiola’s big-money outfit have swept all before them, Burnley refused to buckle.

And after defending for their lives to stay in the hunt, Sean Dyche’s men mounted a storming late fightback which brought them a top-class strike from Gudmundsson eight minutes from time and a cherished first point at Turf Moor in four games.

City keeper Ederson had previously proved unbeatable but even the Brazilian international had no answer to Gudmundsson’s second goal of the season which means the Clarets have now taken something from each of the top five teams in the table.

Among all the pre-match hype over Guardiola’s call for more protection for his players, it was claret and blue shirts littering the pitch in the opening minutes as Ashley Barnes, Sam Vokes and Phil Bardsley all required treatment.

Physio Ally Beattie was over-worked as he then had to revive goalkeeper Nick Pope after a collision with City captain Vincent Kompany as the visitors probed for the opening goal.

Burnley did a decent job at keeping them at bay with a disciplined defensive effort, while trying to release the pressure the twin outlet of Ashley Barnes and Sam Vokes.

The pair started together for just the second time in the league this season – Jeff Hendrick moving back into central midfield in place of Ashley Westwood – as Dyche went for a positive approach to try and slow City’s romp towards the title, also giving a first start to January signing Aaron Lennon on the left wing.

That also helped to restrict City’s ability to work the ball out from the back at will, although when it clicked, their counter-attacking was of breath-taking quality.

But, as so often is the case against the champions-elect, just when it looked as though all bases are covered, City went in front after 22 minutes.

Danilo wasn’t the obvious threat when Kevin De Bruyne lined up a corner, but when the former Real Madrid full-back was given the ball he was allowed too much time to advance towards the Clarets’ penalty area and bend a vicious strike beyond Pope.

Having dropped points in only three games this season, City rarely relinquish a lead.

But Burnley’s response was superb as they immediately tried to hit back and it was former City youngster Ben Mee who twice went close to levelling.

Mee’s last goal had come at City 13 months ago and he almost repeated the trick with a fine strike after half an hour.

Jack Cork lifted the ball back in after a free-kick had been headed clear and Mee’s left-footed volley was headed for the bottom corner until Ederson made an excellent save.

The Clarets’ skipper then headed just wide following a corner but Burnley made sure they were still in the game at half-time as Pope stood firm to deny de Bruyne and Sergio Aguero – who has had scored in his previous four games against the Clarets – a second City goal just before the break.

With Bardsley struggling to shake off his early knock, Matt Lowton started the second half to make his 50th Premier League appearance for the Clarets.

And Lowton made a vital early contribution as he blocked an effort from Aguero after City’s record goalscorer had danced his way through the Clarets’ defence.

Aguero then created the next chance for Raheem Sterling which the England international lifted over the top and Danilo almost repeated his first-half strike with an effort which Pope touched over the bar at full stretch as City went for the kill.

But while it was still 1-0 the Clarets always had a chance of getting something and after Ilkay Gundogan had been booked for a foul on Lennon, Gudmundsson’s free-kick was only inches away from Vokes and Mee with 25 minutes to go.

And the Clarets then went even closer to an equaliser five minutes later when only another fantastic save from Ederson denied Lennon a dream start to his Turf Moor career.

Gudmundsson, driving Burnley on after being switched to the left flank at the break, created the danger with a run into the box before Jack Cork ferried the ball into the path of Lennon, whose shot from 10 yards was destined for the roof of the net before Ederson stuck out a hand to divert the ball onto the bar and away to safety.

Sterling was then guilty of a remarkable miss at the other end – poking the ball wide from two yards out – as the game became wide open and the Clarets had a real go at saving a point.

Lennon sliced another shot wide but there was a feeling a goal was coming as the Clarets gave everything to earn some reward from their growing pressure.

And when it did arrive with eight minutes to go it was a gem to secure a second successful comeback in the space of four days.

The impressive Lowton had already delivered a couple of inviting crosses as he linked well with Lennon and helped take the fight to City.

And the full-back's latest effort was superbly swung in for Gudmundsson to run onto and drive a perfect first-time finish past Ederson to leave Turf Moor - and the would-be champions - rocking on another red-letter day.

Burnley: Pope, Bardsley (Lowton HT), Long, Mee, Taylor, Gudmundsson, Hendrick, Cork, Lennon, Barnes, Vokes. Substitutes: Lindegaard, Nkoudou, Westwood, Wells, Arfield, O’Neill.

Booked: Long, Cork, Mee, Barnes

Manchester City: Ederson, Walker, Kompany, Otamendi, Danilo, Fernandinho, B Silva, Gundogan, De Bruyne, Sterling (Diaz 74), Aguero. Substitutes: Bravo, Laporte, Adarabioyo, Zinchenko, Toure.

Booked: Gundogan

Referee: Martin Atkinson

Attendance: 21,658

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