Clarets Make Suckers of Toffees
Sunday 23rd August 2009 @3pm Kick Off
The Clarets continued their remarkable debut journey in the Premier League on Sunday by getting another precious three points in the bag against Everton at Turf Moor. The 1-0 victory against last season`s fifth placed club was another fantastic boost to our confidence after also beating champions. Manchester United on home soil earlier in midweek.
The key to our survival this season in the Premier League will be our performance at home and already Fortress Turf Moor and the Cauldron effect are beginning to reap dividends. Who though in their wildest dreams thought we would now be in 7th place with six points after three games especially considering the teams played?
Yes, ok let`s not get carried away, we all know what a tough league this is and we might find out sooner rather than later with away games coming up against Chelsea and Liverpool next but what an encouraging start. Turf Moor was electric again on Sunday with a gate of 19,983 enjoying the action and Owen Coyle certainly seems to have got the lads believing in themselves and fearing no team.
This game in many ways was similar to the one against United, one goal in the first half with the same final score line deciding the match in favour of the Clarets of course but also a missed penalty again for the away side. Jensen did not need to save the spot kick this time though; Saha put the ball wide of target much to the relief of the Clarets contingent. In a way that was justice since the penalty decision was rather harsh and confirmed to be so by the slow-motion play back on TV.
On Wednesday night, Robbie Blake was the hero after scoring a spectacular goal, this time it was Wade Elliott striking a wonderful goal in the 34th minute.
Owen Coyle still without Steven Caldwell (groin) and Michael Duff (ankle) named an unchanged eighteen with the side lining up exactly as they had done in midweek against United
Jensen, Mears, Carlisle, Bikey, Jordan, Alexander, Elliott, McCann, Blake, Paterson, Fletcher
Subs: Penny, Kalvenes, Gudjonsson, McDonald, Eagles, Guerrero, Thompson
Everton were without Julian Lescott who is close to a £22 million move to moneybags Manchester City and Yakubu was also out with an Achilles injury. Anichebe, Arteta and Jagielka were missing too sidelined with knee problems. Jack Rodwell though who was a doubt with a twisted knee did pull through to retain his place in the side after a brace of goals in Everton's midweek 4-0 victory against Sigma Olomouc in the Europa League play-off first-leg match. There was also some doubt that Steven Pienaar would feature after getting a kick on the foot and like Rodwell also being replaced in the Europa match. He too though made the starting eleven.
Everton, still a strong looking side despite some key injuries and in spite of losing Lescott lined-up as follows:
Howard, Hibbert, Baines, Yobo, Saha, Neville, Pienaar, Cahill, Osman, Fellaini , Rodwell.
Subs: Nash, Vaughan, Gosling, Duffy, Baxter, Jo, Wallace
Bizarrely, the referee for the match was Phil Dowd who was originally supposed to be the referee for the United game four days earlier according to all the Official sites before Alan Wiley took charge of that match. It is not clear why the change occurred but Clarets fans could be forgiven for thinking he had turned up four days too late!
With the match barely four minutes old, the Clarets could have been 2-0 up after a blistering start by Burnley buoyed on by the noisy fans shouting from the rafters from all sides of the ground. So good to see Clarets fans in the Cricket Field Stand now too!
On 2 minutes, Chris McCann got in a cross only for Paterson to head onto the bar. The ball fell to Fletcher who shot towards goal but Toffees keeper, Tim Howard saved well. Two minutes later and Paterson`s header from an Elliott cross was flicked just wide of the post.
The impressive attacking Clarets came close again on 18 minutes. A cross from the lively McCann was only partially cleared and the ball fell to Fletcher but he could only put his volley wide as Burnley continued to press.
Everton looking rather nervous and confused by the Clarets domination finally got into the match just before the half-hour mark. Pienaar though on the edge of the box should have done better with his shot which flew well wide. Jensen easily saved a header from Rodwell after 31 minutes but Everton now began to get more and more into the game. Saha was one of many who could not make contact with a dangerous looking cross from Hibbert on 32 minutes but two minutes later this little bit of pressure from Everton evaporated as the Clarets took a well deserved lead.
Fletcher cut back a ball to Elliott and the Wembley hero let rip with a wonderful curling shot, that sailed into net at the far post with Howard outstretched. The ball did get a slight deflection from Phil Neville but by now nobody cared, Burnley were 1-0 up with Clarets fans loving every minute of it!
The rest of the half was played out with very little action and as the half-time whistle went, the Clarets thoroughly deserved their lead going into the break 1-0 in front.
Once more Owen Coyle for the umpteenth game decided not to make any changes for the start of a second half, and there was certainly no need to for this match with the Clarets once more storming out of the blocks.
Blake took a corner after 4 minutes and Carlisle might have scored with a header if he had grown more hair in the close season!
Fletcher just failed to reach a cross from McCann after 55 minutes with Everton once more on the back foot. Everton fans didn`t have much to shout about and could only gasp in disbelief as a Saha shot was both high & wide with the ball sailing into the midst of them.
3 minutes after the hour mark, McCann tried a spectacular overhead kick from 12 yards out only for Howard to tip over the bar.
By now it was hard to believe Everton were 5th in the Premier League last season. David Moyes looked desperate to get back into this game no doubt thinking about that 6-1 thumping at home to Arsenal in the opener whilst recalling the fact that Everton had not lost two successive League games since October 2007. On 65 minutes he decided to replace owd haircut 'what the hell is that on your head?` Fellaini with Jo.
10 minutes later though, Clarets hearts sank after Dowd awarded a penalty against McCann for supposedly bringing down Hibbert in the box. TV Cameras would later show though it was the wrong decision with both McCann and later Blake pulling out of the tackle with a clear dive in evidence by the Sticky Toffee Pudding! No matter though, it was still a penalty as Saha stepped up to the mark. Justice was done though with the off target Saha continuing his bad night by putting his penalty shot wide of the left upright.
Desperation was now setting in for the Toffees and Saha showed once more his poor shooting skills on the night by firing wide with just ten minutes to go
Coyle was now ready to liven things up on 85 minutes; on came left winger Guerrero for Blake and he made almost an instant impact with just one minute of the match remaining. Howard could only stand and stare as the Ecuador International`s chip sailed agonisingly close to crossing the line at the back post.
Similar parallels to the United game continued as the fourth official announced 4 minutes of added time but we stood tall as Jo attempted to score from a dangerous-looking direct free kick. He could only hit the wall though as the seconds counted down
Finally at long last the final whistle went and it was time for more euphoria from the Clarets faithful
Another valuable three points and now after beating United who had not been beaten by a promoted club in 17 games we had now gone one better and beaten Everton who had been sitting on a run of 18 games. Does it get any better than this? We might find out soon in our next two league games away to Chelsea and Liverpool but first there is the little matter of Hartlepool United in the carling Cup second round match at Victoria Park this Tuesday night(25th August)
Burnley: Jensen, Jordan, Carlisle, Bikey, Mears, Alexander, Blake (Guerrero 85), McCann, Elliott, Paterson (Eagles 79), Fletcher (Thompson 86).
Subs: Penny, Kalvenes, McDonald, Gudjonsson.
Goal: Elliott (34)
Booked: Elliott (foul, 49)
Everton: Howard, Hibbert, Baines, Yobo, Saha, Neville, Pinaar, Cahill, Osman, Fellaini (Jo 65), Rodwell.
Subs: Nash, Vaughan, Gosling, Duffy, Baxter, Wallace.
Referee: Phil Dowd (Staffordshire)
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