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Match Reports

Burnley 0 Cardiff 0

5 April 2016

Burnley 0 Cardiff 0

Burnley had to settle for a stalemate against a battling David Marshall-inspired Cardiff side at Turf Moor.

The Clarets remain at the summit of the Championship and extended their unbeaten run to 17 games, but could have had all three points but for the Bluebirds captain, who made two terrific saves in each half to earn his side a point.

Marshall saved well from George Boyd and Andre Gray in the first half, then denied Sam Vokes and Ashley Barnes as Burnley upped the ante in search of a late winner.

As it was, a point left Sean Dyche’s side two points clear of third-placed Brighton with six games remaining.

The Clarets were unchanged from the dramatic 2-2 draw at Brighton three days earlier, with Barnes making the bench.

Despite the opening period of the match being a flowing affair, chances were a few, with two tame efforts going amiss for the visitors.

Former Rovers forward Tom Lawrence saw his ambitious strike deflected wide after two minutes ahead of a Stuart O’Keefe effort which was comfortably held by captain Tom Heaton.

However, midway through the half the Clarets could have taken the lead through Boyd.

A stunning reverse pass from in-form striker Sam Vokes played in the wide-man, but after taking a touch a vital last-minute sliding block denied the Scotland international a certain opener.

Cardiff responded immediately, and with a slice of luck, the game remained level!

The Bluebirds countered after the Clarets squandered possession, leaving the visitors in a dangerous two-on-one situation.

Lawrence burst forward from the halfway line with Anthony Pilkington to his left, but thankfully a scuffed strike was straight at Heaton.

Cardiff skipper Marshall was then called upon, pulling off two fine saves to keep the scoreline level at the break.

Matthew Lowton’s throw-in into the box was glanced on by Vokes finding Gray, but the forward’s instinctive shot on the swivel was wonderfully saved at the near post to deny the league’s top scorer.

And in additional time in the first half Marshall again came to Cardiff’s heroics.

Stephen Ward’s delightful chip to the far post evaded the Cardiff’s defence finding Boyd, but the winger’s half-volley once again brought a superb save from the legs of Marshall.

In comparison to the first, the second half offered few chances, with the first effort falling 18-minutes from time.

Joey Barton’s wonderful curling cross from the right found Vokes 10-yards out, however the Welshman couldn’t steer his header on target.

Matthew Taylor replaced Scott Arfield, while Gray made way for Barnes, who made his first Turf Moor appearance since May, 2015.

And Barnes made an instant impact, superbly controlling before laying off Barton.

The midfielder found Lowton on the right by-line, and a stunning ball across goal awaited a touch from Vokes, however the chance went begging as Cardiff nervously cleared.

Two golden chances for the visitors might then have broken the deadlock with five minutes to go.

Kenneth Zohore’s cross found Lex Immers at the far post, and a vita deflection from Ward steered the goalbound strike wide.

A minute later Zohore was through on goal with just Heaton to beat!

Immers this time the provider glanced over a ball to the debutant, whose cheeky chip over Heaton bounced to safety off the Clarets’ crossbar.

And two minutes into stoppage time the Clarets then saw two late strikes wonderfully kept out by Marshall.

Taylor’s venomous in-swinging free-kick to the back post found the onrushing Vokes, whose glancing header was equalled by a sprawling Marshall, who tipped it over for a corner.

Taylor then sprinted over to take the resulting flag kick, where Barnes’ goalbound flick was again somehow kept out by the Scotland international.

BURNLEY: Heaton, Ward, Mee, Keane, Lowton, Arfield (Taylor 66), Barton, Jones, Boyd, Vokes, Gray (Barnes 75)
Subs: Robinson, Kightly, Tarkowski, Darikwa, Marney.

CARDIFF: Marshall, Peltier, Morrison, Manga, Malone, Lawrence (Noone 84), O’Keefe (Zohore 84), Dikgacoi, Ralls, Pilkington (Gunnarsson 66), Immers.
Subs: Moore, Fabio, Whittingham, Ameobi

Ref: G Eltringham

Attendance: 15,740 (277 away)

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