English Premiership

Barnes fires Burnley into top four

2017-12-13 07:28
Ashley Barnes (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Burnley continued their impressive form in the Premier League with a 1-0 win over Stoke City at Turf Moor on Tuesday taking them into the top four.

The Potters were the stronger team in the first half and hit the woodwork through Mame Biram Diouf, but Sean Dyche's side lifted their game after the break and managed to sneak a dramatic late winner through Ashley Barnes.

The match got off to a bright start with the hosts going close in the third minute when James Tarkowski headed wide from a free-kick, before Xherdan Shaqiri tested Nick Pope with a volley moments later at the other end.

Mark Hughes' men enjoyed the better chances from that point on and Peter Crouch was let in by a mis-kick from Tarkowski on five minutes, but the striker's shot was parried away from danger by Pope, who claimed Kurt Zouma's header from Shaqiri's cross a minute later.

Ramadan Sobhi created an opportunity for Diouf on 20 minutes after skinning Johann Berg Gudmundsson on the left, but the Senegalese forward's header missed the target.

Diouf was a whisker away from breaking the deadlock on 28 minutes after released on the right by Shaqiri, with his shot skimming the top corner of the crossbar, while Sobhi failed to trouble Pope with an effort from the top of the D soon after when a corner was cleared into his path.

Gudmundsson failed to hit the target on the rebound after Scott Arfield's initial shot had been blocked in the 39th minute, which proved the final action of the first half.

Pope was required to make a save from Shaqiri's shot just outside the area in the 54th minute, while Jack Butland was finally called into action in the 69th minute as he kept out a volley from Steve Defour.

Gudmundsson was wasteful again in the 71st minute when he flashed an effort wide of goal after Chris Wood failed to make contact with an overhead-kick.

Substitute Barnes fired a weak shot wide of the target from Wood's knockdown on 77 minutes, before Eric-Maxim Choupo-Moting drew a save out of Pope from the edge of the box five minutes from time.

The visitors almost snatched a late winner from Crouch's overhead-kick that flew just wide on 87 minutes, but instead the Clarets went up the other end to score. Good work from Barnes saw him play a one-two with Arfield before slotting home from inside the area.

Pope preserved his team's lead at the death with a good save to keep out Tarkowski's header from Erik Pieters' cross in stoppage time.

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Saturday, 24 February 2018
Leicester City v Stoke City, King Power Stadium 14:30
Liverpool v West Ham United, Anfield 17:00
Brighton & Hove Albion v Swansea City, The American Express Community Stadium 17:00
West Bromwich Albion v Huddersfield Town, The Hawthorns 17:00
Burnley v Southampton, Turf Moor 17:00
AFC Bournemouth v Newcastle United, Vitality Stadium 17:00
Watford v Everton, Vicarage Road Stadium 19:30
Sunday, 25 February 2018
Crystal Palace v Tottenham Hotspur, Selhurst Park 14:00
Manchester United v Chelsea, Old Trafford 16:05
Thursday, 01 March 2018
Arsenal v Manchester City, Emirates Stadium 21:45
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