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Match Reports

Burnley 0 Tottenham Hotspur 2

1 April 2017

Burnley 0 Tottenham Hotspur 2

Second-half goals from Eric Dier and Heung-Min Son deprived the Clarets of a happy homecoming as they were beaten at Turf Moor for the first time in seven Premier League games.

Burnley’s return to familiar territory after more than a month on the road failed to bring any reward as in-form Tottenham became the first side since North London neighbours Arsenal at the start of October – barring Lincoln’s FA Cup heroics - to leave with a clean sheet.

That looked as though it might be the limit of their ambitions as Spurs threatened to be over-run by Sean Dyche’s side in the first half.

But the Clarets have suddenly found goals hard to come by and having failed to have anything more to show for their efforts before the break were then unable to avoid being over-powered themselves by a side that still has aspirations of catching run-away league leaders Chelsea to snatch the title.

Tottenham had lost just once in the Premier League since early December but won’t have had many more testing 45 minutes than they did in the opening half.

The Londoners came north with no margin for error in their unlikely pursuit of Chelsea.

But the champions-elect, like many before them, had not found life easy at Turf Moor as they drew 1-1 at Burnley in mid-February.

That had been the Clarets’ last home league game ahead of a testing run of four successive away fixtures which had contributed to a winless run of six games.

And back on home Turf, Dyche’s men were soon back in the old routine as they kept Tottenham out of their comfort zone to make things equally awkward for Mauricio Pochettino’s high-fliers.

Spurs, who included former Clarets’ favourite Kieran Trippier at right wing-back, were never allowed to settle into any sort of passing routine.

And they were often rattled at the back as the hard-running hosts hassled and harried them into losing possession and hurried clearances.

Matt Lowton, making his 100th Premier League appearance, and Stephen Ward both got into advanced positions to try and support those in front of them as Burnley pushed for the break-through.

Andre Gray also pulled Tottenham’s much-vaunted centre-backs around as the Clarets – unchanged from the point they took from a goalless draw at Sunderland before the international break - peppered the penalty area.

But, crucially, they couldn’t get a clear sight of goal and despite showing little threat in the absence of talismanic striker Harry Kane, it was Spurs who should have led by the break.

For once, the Clarets were caught out on the break and after Tom Heaton had kept out Christian Eriksen’s angled drive, Dele Alli lifted a simple chance over the top from the rebound with 32 minutes gone.

If that hurt, the pain was of a more physical nature for the visitors in a bizarre few minutes just before half-time.

Victor Wanyama finally hobble off after a collection of knocks, while Harry Winks then required a stretcher to reach the dressing rooms after catching Ward with a late challenge and tumbling onto the running track in front of the dug-outs.

And it was Winks’ replacement – Moussa Sissoko – who went close to putting Spurs in front again four minutes into the second half.

This time Heaton parried a low strike from Vincent Janssen and it took a timely interception from the ever-reliable Ward to prevent Sissoko poking home the loose ball.

Heaton then saved from Ben Davies as Tottenham tried to force the issue and with the game becoming increasingly stretched, the Clarets made their first change with Sam Vokes replacing Gray to make his 200th appearance for the club.

The chances were coming Tottenham’s way, though, Sissoko blasting wide after Burnley had played their way into trouble.

And 22 minutes into the second half the pressure told as Tottenham went 1-0 up.

Joey Barton averted the immediate danger but only at the cost of a corner which was cleared by Jeff Hendrick only as far as Dier, who calmly picked his spot to slot home his first Premier League goal since December, 2015.

The Clarets tried to respond with half-chances for Michael Keane and Scott Arfield, who both shot wide.

But as one of the form teams of the division, Tottenham are taking some stopping and with 12 minutes to go they made the points safe.

Eriksen’s floated pass for Alli was perfectly weighted for the England man to cross low to the far post where substitute Son side-footed home.

And Tottenham should have had a third before the end with Alli firing wide when he had the chance to make Spurs the first team to score three times at Turf Moor this season.

Burnley: Heaton, Lowton, Keane, Mee, Ward, Boyd (Brady 74), Barton, Hendrick, Arfield (Defour 79), Gray (Vokes 56), Barnes. Substitutes: Flanagan, Westwood, Tarkowski, Defour, Robinson. 

Booked: Keane, Barnes

Tottenham:  Lloris, Trippier, Dier, Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Davies, Wanyama (Dembele 45), Winks (Sissoko 45), Eriksen, Dele, Janssen (Son 74). Substitutes:  Vorm, Carter-Vickers, Walker, Nkoudou. 


Referee: Stuart Attwell

Attendance: 21,684

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