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Match Reports

West Bromwich Albion 4 Burnley 0

21 November 2016

West Bromwich Albion 4 Burnley 0

Burnley haven't won a league game at West Bromwich Albion since December, 1969 and that wait goes on after another night to forget at the Hawthorns.

The Clarets have now lost nine of their last 10 visits to the highest ground in the country to face the Baggies in a league fixture.

And once again the West Midlands venue proved too great a barrier to breach as Burnley suffered a repeat of the defeat they suffered on their last visit here in 2014.

That was one of the Clarets' worst performances on their last visit to the top flight and Sean Dyche's men again turned in an uncharacteristically tame display against a side happy to cruise to only their second home win of the season to go above Burnley and up to ninth place in the Premier League.

Having drawn 0-0 at Manchester United in their last away game to earn a first point away from Turf Moor this season, Burnley failed to match the discipline and determination they showed at Old Trafford as their three-match unbeaten run came to a disappointing end.

Two early goals allowed Albion to dictate almost from the off and with Burnley then having to try and chase the game, it was tailor-made for Tony Pulis' men to further pick them off with further goals either side of the break on their way to their biggest win of the season.

Given their record here, the last thing Burnley needed was to go behind early but in a disastrous start the Baggies scored twice in the opening quarter of an hour to take control.

Ironically, the Clarets had started brightly but Albion were always content to sit deep and surrender possession before pouncing on the break.

And inside four minutes they made their first attack count to take the lead.

Clarets' boss Dyche reverted to the back four that had started all of Burnley's games prior to their 3-2 win over Crystal Palace before the international break as the fit-again Stephen Ward replaced Jon Flanagan at left-back.

But the visitors' back line was exposed as the dangerous James Morrison got free down the right-hand side and delivered a low cross aimed for Salomon Rondon.

Dean Marney attempted to cut out the danger but could only slide the ball in the direction of Matt Phillips, whose shot on the turn flew into the roof of the net from close range to give the former QPR winger his second goal in as many games.

Burnley's response was positive and they should have made it 1-1 but Jeff Hendrick was unable to steer his close-range effort goalwards after Sam Vokes had headed down the midfielder on the corner of the six-yard box following a free-kick.

And three minutes later West Brom doubled their advantage as Burnley were caught short on the break.

Again the Clarets lost the ball deep in home territory and were then exposed at the back as Rondon showed great strength to hold off Michael Keane and release Morrison to run at Ben Mee before sliding a low shot inside Tom Heaton's left-hand post.

Morrison then missed an easier chance after HeatonĀ  - making his 150th appearance for the Clarets - had passed the ball straight to the feet of the Scotland international before Rondon volleyed wide following a mis-placed header from Matt Lowton.

Heaton redeemed himself with a stunning finger-tip save to keep out Rondon's curling effort but any hope the Clarets had of heading to the dressing room to re-group at just 2-0 down disappeared eight minutes before the break when Albion struck again.

Phillips once more caused problems after Burnley had again been forced to back-pedal after losing the ball and from his far-post cross, Darren Fletcher side-footed home his first goal since February.

Dyche made a change at the start of the second half as Ashley Barnes replaced Steven Defour in a switch to 4-4-2.

And the striker at least got Burnley on the front foot, forcing an early corner that came to nothing and then helping create an opening for Lowton which was snuffed out by Jonny Evans' superbly-timed intervention.

The Clarets spent plenty of time in the Baggies' half but with a mass of defensive bodies in front of him, goalkeeper Ben Foster didn't have a save to make.

And Burnley's defensive frailties were exposed again when the hosts went 4-0 up with anotherĀ  well-executed goal, this time left-back Allan Nyrom getting to the by-line to pull the ball back for Rondon to get the goal he deserved with a shot on the turn which beat the covering Ward.

Foster was finally called into action to save twice from Johann Berg Gudmundsson, the second a finger-tip effort which just about diverted a free-kick from the Icelander over the bar.

But a goal then would probably have done little to mask a below-par performance from the Clarets on a ground they will be glad to see the back of for another season, Heaton saving well late on from substitute Craig Gardner to prevent further damage.

Burnley: Heaton, Lowton, Keane, Mee, Ward, Arfield, Marney, Defour (Barnes ht), Hendrick, Gudmundsson (Boyd 79, Vokes (Gray 70). Subs: Robinson, Flanagan, Kightly, Tarkowski.

WBA: Foster, Dawson, McAuley, Evans, Nyom, Fletcher, Yacob, Morrison (Gardner 83), Brunt, Phillips (McClean 75), Rondon (Robson-Kanu 79). Subs: Palmer, Olsson, Galloway, Leko. Referee: Mike Jones

Referee: Mike Jones

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