Leeds 1 Burnley 2
BURNLEY slipped effortlessly into the top two with a magnificent victory at Leeds.
First half goals from Scott Arfield and Sam Vokes deservedly put the Clarets in control of the Roses clash.
And after David Jones was carried off with an injury, Leeds’ responded with a late goal from substitute Matt Smith – before laying siege to the Clarets goal as they searched for a way back.
But despite six minutes of stoppage time, Burnley held firm to keep up the early pressure on the Championship pacesetters.
Burnley named an unchanged from the team that beat Birmingham 3-0 at Turf Moor in midweek.
And it was a bright start by the Clarets, who carried on where they left off against the Blues.
Sam Vokes found room on the edge of the box to force a terrific sprawling save from Paddy Kenny.
And as the early pressure forced Leeds onto the back foot, a delicious right wing cross from Michael Kightly was turned behind at the far post with Vokes lurking.
A delightful move from Leeds created their first opening just after the quarter hour mark.
Luke Murphy’s magnificent crossfield diagonal found Ross McCormack and form his cross, the unmarked Luke Varney headed over from six yards.
Bur straight from the re-start Burnley were deservedly ahead – the 19th time in 29 away games they have grabbed the opening goal!
Kieran Trippier’s low cross from deep on the right flank was dummied by Ings and Vokes’ shot on the turn was blocked.
But the ball ran kindly for Arfield, who somehow squeezed the ball in at the near post from the tightest of angles at the second attempt.
That forced an immediate response from Leeds and midway through the half Varney again had a great opportunity to level, as he was allowed to turn in the box.
However, this time his on-target attempt was parried to safety by the ever-alert Heaton.
And on the half hour, as the pressure intensified from Leeds, McCormack glanced a cross just side of Heaton’s far post.
But this Burnley side is made of stern stuff and five minutes before the break Sean Dyche’s men doubled their lead.
Kightly picked out Vokes with a peach of a cross and Vokes header was clawed clear by Kenny, only for the Welsh striker to pounce and drill home the loose ball from another tight angle.
And the Clarets protected that lead to the break, despite an audacious dive in the box from Aidan White on the stroke of half time as he tried to con referee Lee Probert.
The Clarets started the second half in the same vein and after Vokes drilled a Dean Marney cross wide, the Welshman’s ball over the top released Ings for a vicious rising drive that Kenny superbly turned over.
Soon, Marney’s low effort from the edge of the box took a wicked deflection and forced Kenny into yet another fingertip save.
It was breathtaking stuff from the Clarets at times, as their triangles and movement constantly bamboozled United.
Bur there was a earning as McCormack headed narrowly wide with a header across goal following a double substitution from Brian McDermott.
And when Diouf’s powerful header had more accuracy soon after, as he met a free kick at the far post, Heaton made a quite brilliant one-handed save on his goal-line to keep the two-goal cushion intact.
There followed a nasty, late challenge from sub Dominic Poleon on Jones as the midfielder cleared the ball upfield.
And following a lengthy stoppage – and a booking for the teenager, there was a worrying sight as Jones was stretchered off in real pain.
The home side were getting increasingly desperate and after Heaton was equal to Poleon’s ambitious effort from the left side of the box, the Clarets goal had a lucky escape as Jason Shackell unwittingly deflected Michael Tonge’s goalbound flick inches wide of the post.
But United finally grabbed their lifeline in the 79th minute when sub Smith rose highest to a deep free kick to halve the deficit.
Elland Road was suddenly a cauldron and Sean Dyche withdrew Kightly for the extra protection provided by Brian Stock.
But when Austin fired over on the volley from the edge of the box in stoppage time, Leeds’ last chance went with it as the classy Clarets chalked up another scalp.
Burnley: Heaton, Trippier, Duff, Shackell, Mee, Jones (Edgar 71), Marney, Arfield, Kightly (Stock 83), Ings, Vokes
Subs: Cisak, Long, Lafferty, Stanislas, Treacy
Booked: Jones 52
Leeds: Kenny, Pearce, Murphy (Poleon 56), Austin, Varney (Smith 75), White, Tonge, Diouf, Wootton, Byram (Green 57) McCormack
Subs: Hunt, Brown, Cairns, Mowatt.
Booked: Poleon 67, Tonge 89
Referee: L Probert
Att: 26, 465