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McNeil Is Turf's 'Goal-den' Boy

Wingman loving life after classy strike seals another big win

22 February 2020

Dwight McNeil was delighted to light up Turf Moor once more as he ended his long wait for a goal in stunning style.

McNeil capped a manic afternoon with the final goal in a 3-0 win over Bournemouth.

His blistering left-foot strike came just moments after he had curled an effort against the inside of a post.

And it needed something special to beat Cherries goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale, an England Under-21 team-mate of McNeil who underlined his international credentials with a top-class display.

“After the first one came back off the post we looked at each other and had a bit of a laugh about it, but fortunately I scored past him today,” said McNeil, whose first goal since October and second of the season clinched a fourth win in five games for Sean Dyche’s in-form men.

“Some of the lads said it’s been a long time coming!

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“I think it has but I’m just happy to get on the scoresheet.

“I love playing for the club. It’s always nice to score. The main thing is getting the three points but it’s a bonus to score and nice to celebrate in front of the home fans.

“It’s been a while coming but I enjoyed it very much.”    

McNeil also claimed an assist for Matej Vydra’s opening goal early in the second-half, becoming the youngest player since Manchester City’s title-winner Raheem Sterling to record 10 assists in the Premier League.

But the brilliance of Burnley in the closing stages and another McNeil master-class told only half the story as Bournemouth had two goals disallowed by VAR.

The second came after a hand-ball at the other end of the pitch by Cherries defender Adam Smith, detected at Stockley Park and given as a penalty which Jay Rodriguez gladly rammed home for his eighth goal of the season as the Clarets climbed to eighth place in the table – 13 points clear of the bottom three and just three points behind fifth place.

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“It makes all the difference. It turned the game from going 1-1 to 2-0 up and from then we just dominated the second half and could have had more goals,” added McNeil.

“At first I thought it was handball, but they had a good counter-attack and scored and I thought it would be 1-1 and we would have to go again.

“But VAR ruled it out and when we went 2-0 up we had that bit of breathing space.

“A couple of VAR decisions turned the game a bit to our favour but it’s good we got the three points. We played well, especially in the second half.

“The first half was a bit tricky for us but in the second half we turned it around and with the second-half performance I think we got the three points we deserved.

“The main job for us is to stay in the Premier League and then you never know what could happen. We could be in Europe again…….”


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