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'Soft' Penalty A Kick In The Teeth - Mee

Clarets skipper disappointed as Arsenal strike late again but lifted by performance

26 November 2017

Ben Mee rued the award of a ‘soft penalty’ as the Clarets were cruelly denied at the death yet again by Arsenal.

The Gunners clinched a 1-0 win at Turf Moor for the second year running thanks to an injury-time strike.

After Laurent Koscielny’s hand-ball winner just over 12 months ago, this time Alexis Sanchez bagged the points from the penalty spot after James Tarkowski was ruled to have pushed Aaron Ramsey in the back.

And following another injury-time loss at the Emirates Stadium when Mee conceded a spot-kick converted by Sanchez after an off-side decision was missed in the build-up, it was a bitter pill for Burnley to swallow as they were beaten for only the third time this season.

“It happened to us against these a couple of times last season, so to happen again is really disappointing. It was a kick in the teeth,” said Mee.

“I thought it (the penalty) was soft. His (Ramsey’s) back was towards me and I was concentrating on the ball coming over his head.

“Tarky said he put his arms up and the ball was going over his head, so there was no reason to push him.

“Tarky’s disappointed. He didn’t feel he had done too much to affect the player who went down.

“He was disappointed, but he was fantastic again today, so there will be no hard feelings towards him and he will pick himself up and come back.”

The Clarets would have gone fourth in the Premier League with a fourth successive win and looked capable of doing it – particularly in a first half which saw then outplay the Gunners and hit a post when Petr Cech made a fine save from the outstanding Johann Berg Gudmundsson.

“There were massive positives,” Mee added. “We matched a really good side and played really well in the first half.

“I think we had the better opportunities, the better of the play and created some good chances.

“The second half was a different game. We had to dig in and defend really well and counter on the break.

“We played well and we will pick ourselves up from this disappointment and we will go and perform on Wednesday (at Bournemouth), for sure.”

The Clarets were only moments away from keeping a fourth successive clean sheet with Mee and his defensive colleagues again magnificent in limiting Arsenal to very few sights of goal as Nick Pope was never tested until Sanchez’s late strike, which just sneaked under the goalkeeper’s arm, as England boss Gareth Southgate watched from the Turf Moor directors’ box.

“Hopefully he has taken some positives form ourselves and a few of our players are fighting to catch his eye,” said the Clarets’ captain.

“I just want to play well for this club and do well and keep keeping clean sheets like we have done in the past few weeks.

“We were unfortunate not to do that again today, so I just want to play well and whatever comes along with it comes.”

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