Saints defeat but rest lose too!!
St Mary's Stadium
Saturday 21st March 2015 @3pm Kick-Off
The Clarets disappointingly lost 2-0 to Southampton at St Marys on Saturday to remain in the relegation zone. However the result was not that critical with all the clubs immediately below us and above us also failing to get any points. Burnley now have eight games left to try and avoid the drop and currently stand third-from-bottom with 25 points from 30 games. They do however remain six points clear of bottom club Leicester (who have a game in hand). The Foxes went down 4-3 away to Spurs on Saturday whilst second from bottom club QPR suffered a 2-1 home defeat to Everton on Sunday to remain 3 points behind Burnley. Six teams now appear to be in a relegation dogfight. The bottom three clubs are joined by the three clubs above them! Sunderland, Aston Villa and Hull are all within catching distance. All these three clubs also lost over the weekend. Sunderland continue to be in freefall despite having brought in a new manager to replace the sacked Gus Poyet. Dick Advocaat's men went down 1-0 against West Ham at Upton Park on Saturday to remain fourth from bottom with just a point more than the Clarets. Hull remain just above Aston Villa on goal difference with both teams failing to add to their 28 points over the weekend. Hull suffered a 3-2 defeat at home to league leaders Chelsea on Sunday and must have thought they were in with a chance after coming back from two goals down. Remy though scored in the 77th minute for Chelsea to give them victory. Meanwhile it was bad news for Villa too on Saturday; they lost 1-0 at home to Swansea. The good news for the Clarets is that they have a reasonable run in. When you look at their last six games, they still have to play three of their rivals at the bottom including Leicester at home and Hull and Villa away although they only have two home games left out of the six. It is probably crucial the Clarets pick up some points from the tricky consecutive home games coming up against London opposition. Following the international break they play Spurs at Turf Moor on Sunday 5th April followed by Arsenal the following week on Saturday 11th April.
The game against Southampton on Saturday was a pretty bad day at the office for the Clarets and they never really looked like reaching the heights they achieved against Premier League Champions, Manchester City in the previous game at Turf Moor following that tremendous 1—0 victory. The story may have been different after the hosts lost their goalkeeper Fraser Forster who was taken off on a stretcher early on with injuries to his knee and shoulder. Veteran 38 year old keeper Kelvin Davis replaced him and it was thought that he might have been a bit rusty since he had not featured in the first team for some time. Indeed it was his first Premier League game since New Year`s Day 2014! Sadly for the Clarets it was the complete opposite and he played a blinder denying the Clarets on countless occasions. Twice he denied Sam Vokes during the first half and made a third, breathtaking stop before the break to deny Danny Ings a certain equaliser.
Sean Dyche too thought we should have had a penalty when George Boyd was denied a strong first half penalty appeal but in the end we probably didn`t deserve to get anything from this game and didn`t! Burnley nemesis, Shane Long diverted home Nathaniel Clyne's driven shot to open the scoring for the Saints eight minutes before half-time and then Jason Shackell scored an own goal in the 59th minute after inadvertently knocking the ball into his own net following a cross from Ryan Bertrand.
It was no surprise when Sean Dyche named the same starting eleven following their superb 1-0 win over City the week before. There was just one change to the subs` bench with Marvin Sordell coming in to replace the injured Stephen Ward. We therefore lined up as follows:
Heaton, Trippier, Shackell, Duff, Mee, Barnes, Arfield, Jones, Boyd, Ings, Vokes
Subs: Gilks, Reid, Keane, Wallace, Kightly, Jutkiewicz, Sordell
Full Match Report
The Saints looked confident in the early stages but were knocked back following the loss of their keeper Fraser Forster after he was stretchered following a clash with Sam Vokes in the 14th minute. Play resumed after five minutes with veteran Kelvin Davis now in the Southampton goal and that seemed to give Burnley a boost. An excellent through ball from Barnes found Danny Ings to set up a half-chance but advancing on goal the in-demand striker couldn`t seem to get the ball from under his feet to set up a shot. The Clarets kept up the pressure and got two more chances to open the scoring within seconds of each other. Boyd found Barnes out wide and his first time cross was latched onto by Sam Vokes. He let rip with a first-time volley but Davis pulled off the first of a number of impressive saves pushing the ball round the post. Boyd then tried a shot from the resulting corner only to see the ball take a deflection off Pelle and fly over the bar. The hosts were struggling to make any impression at this stage with the Clarets pressing forward and asking all the questions. Boyd cut inside from the left side of the box and then looked to be fouled by Jose Fonte. Strong penalty claims though were turned down and that seemed to give Southampton the lift they needed. Once again it was a tale of missed chances for the Clarets and they paid the price eight minutes from time when the Saints perhaps undeservedly got their noses in front. It was not a pretty defensive performance by the Burnley back-four either after they failed to clear Dusan Tadic`s cross from the left flank. Clyne drove the ball back into the area and it took a deflection falling nicely for Shane Long at the far post to smash the ball home into the roof of the net. Burnley almost equalised immediately but the impressive Davis saved the day once more for the hosts. A first time shot from Ings was heading for the bottom corner of the net until somehow Davis dived at full stretch to glove the ball away. The injury to Forster led to five minutes of first half stoppage time and during this time Heaton pulled off a great save. A header from Steven Davis was looping towards target before Heaton arching backwards managed to tip the ball over and keep the Clarets in the game. The final say of the half though belonged to Davis in goal once again when he denied Sam Vokes turning over his header from just six yards out.
Southampton manager, Ronald Koeman decided to bring on Wanyama for Tadic at the break but Burnley made no changes. In an early chance for the hosts Heaton was scrambling to get to a long-distance shot from Long but the ball flew wide much to the relief of the keeper. Just before the hour mark though, the hosts gave Burnley a mountain to climb when they doubled their lead courtesy of an own goal from Jason Shackell. Ryan Bertrand had fired over a cross from the left but Shackell trying to intercept the ball made contact with his knee. It flew past Heaton into the back of the net to give Southampton a 2-0 lead. Burnley seemed to have the stuffing knocked out of them after that and rarely looked like staging a late comeback or even reducing the arrears. Southampton now looked comfortable in defence and simply soaked up any last ditch efforts from the Clarets running out 2-0 winners with Burnley unable to complain
Southampton: Forster (Davis-14), Clyne, Alderweireld, Fonte, Bertrand, Davis, Schneiderlin, Tadic (Wanyama-46), Long, Mané, Pellè
Subs Not Used: Yoshida, Gardos, Djuricic, Ward-Prowse, Elia
Goals: Long 37, Shackell 58 (o.g.)
Burnley: Heaton, Trippier, Shackell, Duff, Mee, Barnes(Wallace-82), Arfield, Jones, Boyd, Ings (Sordell-88), Vokes (Jutkiewicz-74)
Subs Not Used: Gilks, Reid, Keane, Kightly
Possession: 61% Southampton, 39% Burnley (Source: BBC Sport)
Referee: Roger East (Wiltshire)
'They were good saves from the keeper but I played with Kelvin a long time ago and they are saves a keeper of his calibre was expected to make.
'I was disappointed in the finishing because at half-time you're scratching your head at how we are 1-0 down.'