English Premiership

Wickham and Defoe down Burnley

2015-01-31 19:18
Connor Wickham (Supplied)
Connor Wickham (Supplied)

Cape Town - Burnley's long wait for an away win in the Premier League continues after they fell to a 2-0 defeat to Sunderland at the Stadium of Light on Saturday.

The Lancashire side have now not tasted victory on the road in their last 13 matches, dating back to April 2010 and on their showing in the north-east they look unlikely to break that dismal run any time soon.

Burnley pressed hard but had little to offer in front of goal and in the end were well-beaten by first-half goals from Connor Wickham and former England striker Jermain Defoe, his first for the club.

After a flurry of pressure from the visitors, which saw Ashley Barnes heading narrowly wide from close range, Sunderland took the lead in the 20th minute when Wickham rose unmarked to head home Anthony Reveillere's cross from the right.

It took a good save from Costel Pantilimon to deny George Boyd's shot just before the half-hour but that only spurred the home side into action.

Sunderland continued to have the lion's share of the play and increased their advantage in the 34th minute through Defoe.

Defoe rounded off a sweeping crossfield move which saw Patrick van Aanholt beat the offside trap to get behind the Burnley defence down the left and slid the ball inside for Defoe, who had the easiest of jobs to touch it home from close range.

Remarkably, for a man who had hit a total of 124 Premier League goals against 32 different opponents, it was the first time he had found the net against Burnley.

He nearly doubled his tally for the day shortly after the interval but his clean left-footed strike from van Aaholt's pass was smartly saved by Tom Heaton.

At the other end, the hapless Barnes again failed to get on the scoresheet, first when his header from Boyd's cross was saved by Pantilimon at close range and moments later when his shot from Danny Ings' pass was blocked.


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