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Morecambe 1-0 Burnley

9 July 2013

The Clarets began their pre-season campaign with defeat by the seaside to cap a topsy-turvy day for Sean Dyche’s men.

With last season’s top goalscorer Charlie Austin rested following the sudden collapse of his move to Premier League new boys Hull City early on Wednesday morning, Burnley were always going to be short of full strength.

And in these early stages of the build-up to the new campaign they rarely threatened to click into top gear in a game decided by Kevin Ellison’s late winner.

But with fitness the be-all and end-all with the best part of a month to go until the big kick-off, the Clarets still got plenty out of a competitive encounter ahead of their training trip to Ireland later in the week.

Dyche gave all his fit senior players plenty of game time - as well as experience to a number of Development Squad players - and only a knock to Joe Mills gave the manager further cause for concern.

Defenders Luke O’Neill and Kieran Trippier also sat out the game with minor knocks, along with midfielder Marvin Bartley, which forced Mills to fill in at right-back before he limped off five minutes before the break.

There was a place, though, for on-trial former Scotland U21 midfielder Scott Arfield in Burnley’s midfield as he was given a run-out following released by Huddersfield Town in the summer.

But in searing heat and a bright start to the game it was Keith Treacy on the opposite flank who was at the heart of all Burnley’s early momentum, floating over a cross for Danny Ings to head wide.

It was the hosts, though, who went closest to taking the lead after ten minutes when Jow Mwasile picked out Andrew Fleming, whose rising drive was headed off the line by Danny Lafferty.

Livewire winger Mwasile then teed-up Joe McGee for a wayward shot from 12 yards.

But immediately the Clarets created their best opening to date when Brian Stock’s perfect through-ball sent Danny Ings scampering clear, only for a combination of keeper Barry Roche and new Morecambe skipper Mark Hughes to make the block.

At the other end the Clarets were struggling to contain Mwasile, whose probing runs, lightening pace and trickery made it a test for Mills in his unfamiliar role.

But unfortunately for the Shrimps his finishing didn’t match the rest of his game and after dropping a shoulder and drifting past Kevin Young he fired wide with just Tom Heaton to beat.

The Clarets’ keeper barely had a touch of the ball on his first appearance in a Burnley shirt and he was one of seven players to make way at the break as Dyche rang the changes to utilise his squad.

Alex Cisak took over in goal and the former Oldham man was almost picking the ball out of the net six minutes into the second half as Jack Redshaw sent a long-range effort against a post.

Redshaw, one of a posse of changes by Morecambe boss Jim Bentley, was a lively presence and when he forced a corner shortly afterwards, new home signing Tony Diagne powered a header against the underside of the bar as the League Two side continued to carry a threat.

The Clarets’ reply came through Arfield, who saw more of the ball in a central role and stung the palms of Barry Roche with a fierce 20-yard drive before he made way with almost 20 minutes to go as Dyche gave a taste to a number of his young players.

Ross Wallace provided a bright spark down the right-hand side and Vokes almost got on the end of near-post deliveries from the opposite flank from George Porter and Junior Stanislas.

But it was Morecambe who looked the sharper in and around the 18-yard box and with 11 minutes to go they nicked a winner when the wily Ellison  was first to reach a low cross from former Accrington Stanley striker Padraig Amond to steer a shot past Cisak into the far corner.

Tom Anderson almost levelled with a header from another Stanislas cross but his effort drifted wide and it took a fine late save from Cisak  to keep out an Ellison thunderbolt as the Shrimp netted a morale-boosting win.

BURNLEY: (1st half) Heaton, Mills (Coleman 40), Long, Shackell, Lafferty, Treacy, Stock, Marney, Arfield, Ings, Vokes.

Subs: Anderson, Hewitt, Gilchrist, Errington, Love.

BURNLEY (2nd Half): Cisak, Coleman, Duff, Mee, Lafferty (Anderson 73), Wallace, Hewitt, Arfield (Gallagher), Stanislas, Porter, Vokes (Gilchrist 73(.

Morecambe: (starting) Roche, Wright, Threlfall, Drummond, Hughes, Diagne, Mwasile, Sampson, Fleming, McGee, Marshall.

Subs: Redshaw, Arestidou, Doyle, Kenyon, Carlton, Williams, Ellison, Amond, Bell, Denson, McGowan

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