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Match Reports

REPORT: Sheffield United 3 Burnley 0

First-half goals settle Roses battle as Clarets suffer third successive defeat

2 November 2019

Burnley’s return to Bramall Lane was not a happy one as they were blown away by three first-half goals in a one-sided Roses battle.

Midfield men John Lundstram – who scored his second and third goals in the Premier League – and John Fleck did the damage as the Clarets were subjected to a third straight defeat.

Sean Dyche’s men had no way back after conceding twice just before the break to extend their winless away record.

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And while they improved in the second half, a buoyant Sheffield United side always had plenty in hand in securing a second successive home win which lifted Chris Wilder's newly-promoted side into the top six.

The Clarets were back in this part of Sheffield for the first time in nine years with Jay Rodriguez – one of the scorers that day – again starting in the Clarets’ attack in the continued injury-enforced-absence of joint leading scorer Chris Wood.

Matt Lowton had also been on the scoresheet in the 3-3 draw in October, 2010 but the former Blade has since swapped clubs and Burnley were grateful to their full-back for a superb piece of defending to stop Lys Mousset sliding United into an early lead.

But the respite was only temporary as the Clarets struggled to keep the home side at bay and with just over a quarter of an hour gone the Blades made their initial superiority pay.

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The diversity of the United attack was causing Burnley problems and when the Yorkshiremen came down their left flank, David McGoldrick’slow cross was touched back by Mousett for Lundstram to coolly steer a side-footed shot into the bottom corner.

The Clarets had offered little in response as they struggled to keep the ball long enough to build up any momentum.

But having taken the best of the Blades early blows they did at least start to gain a foothold in the contest and felt they might have had the chance to equalise from the penalty spot as they approached the half-hour mark.

Dwight McNeil’s floated cross hit the arm of defender Jack O’Connell as Ashley Barnes waited behind him to connect in the six-yard box but following lengthy consultation with the VAR nothing was given.

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At one goal down the Clarets would have welcomed the chance to re-group at half-time but two goals in the space of as many minutes just before the break led to a total re-think as a rampant United took complete control of the game.

Lundstram helped himself to his second goal when he arrived at the far post to tuck away a low cross from the excellent Enda Stevens after Mousset had failed to make contact at the near.

And Fleck then made it 3-0 as the Clarets were left shell-shocked, James Tarkowski losing possession to Mousset, whose threaded through-ball was gleefully guided past a static Nick Pope as the Blades doubled their home league goal tally for the season.

Dyche sent on Charlie Taylor in place of Erik Pieters at the start of the second half to try and stem the flow.

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And there could have been a glimmer of hope six minutes into the second half had Barnes taken a decent chance that came his way.

A low cross from Jeff Hendrick was inadvertently steered towards Barnes by O’Connell but the Clarets’ striker lifted his shot on the turn over the bar when a goal might have asked questions of the Blades for the first time.

A second change saw Robbie Brady replace McNeil and the Clarets went close again when Tarkowski forced Dean Henderson into his first save of the afternoon from a Brady corner.

Burnley were dominating possession as the Blades looked to protect what they had but with men committed forward the Clarets almost conceded again mid-way through the half.

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Jack Cork looked as though he was fouled in losing the ball to McGoldrick but the Irishman was allowed to break clear and set up a chance for substitute Billy Sharp, who was denied by Pope’s fine save with an outstretched left leg.

Pope then beat away a volley from Lundstram as the Merseysider exploited inevitable gaps at the back to sniff the chance of a hat-trick.

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He had two further chances to complete the treble and although the Merseysider may regret missing out on the match ball, it was the Clarets who left empty-handed to leave them looking for answers when West Ham come to Turf Moor in a week’s time.

Sheffield United: Henderson; Baldock, Basham, Egan (Jagielka 79), O’Connell, Stevens; Norwood, Fleck; Lundstram, McGoldrick (McBurnie 75), Mousset (Sharp 63). Substitutes: Moore, Freeman, Robinson, Besic.

Booked: None

Burnley: Pope; Lowton, Tarkowski, Mee, Pieters (Taylor HT); Hendrick, Westwood, Cork, O’Neil (Brady 59); Barnes, Rodriguez (Vydra 78). Substitutes: Hart, Gibson, Lennon, Bardsley.

Booked: Tarkowski, Barnes

Referee: Simon Hooper

Attendance: 31,131


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