Turf Moor has often been the place where Burnley stamp their authority and grind out a result. They looked to do the same against a less motivated Crystal Palace and not sure about the authority but they did grind out a result. Chris Wood’s clinical opener after he was gifted a through ball along with Palace’s terrible finishing was enough to see the Clarets win. Here’s how they’ve been rated:-
GK: Tom Heaton – 5/10
Was troubled till he was on the pitch and he had to be alert to react to Benteke’s header which eventually wide. He was substituted after he got injured ten minutes before the first half drew to a close.
RB: Matthew Lowton – 6/10
Kept a grip on Lee and he had to deal with Schlupp when the fullback marched forward for Palace. Overall he did a very neat job.
CB: Ben Mee – 5.5/10
The Burnley defence was tested a lot with Townsend, Benteke, Cabaye and Dann troubling them and Mee had to be at the top of his game to keep out the efforts. His few blocks and clearances were noticeable but he has to be much stronger during duels and as he lost a decent amount aerially.
CB: James Tarkowski – 7.5/10
Arguably the best player for Burnley today. He made clearances in double figures and won five aerial battles which were crucial against the balls of Townsend and presence of Benteke. He’s one of the main reasons as to why Burnley have won with a clean-sheet.
LB: Stephen Ward – 6/10
Suffered continuously with Townsend prowling dangerously with the ball and he let in too many crosses. Only positive is that he combined well with Brady when the Clarets moved forward.
CM: Steven Defour – 5/10
Largely ineffective tonight and there’s not much you can say after a performance like that. He was outplayed by Cabaye and McArthur.
CM: James Cork – 6/10
His tackling and ability to win duels showed a few times but again he was completely overwhelmed in that region which allowed Palace to storm through and pose a threat.
LM: Johann Gudmundsson – 6/10
His passing was neat and his dribbles were good to watch but overall his impact was average from the left channel and he left Schlupp run free on most occasions.
RM: Robert Brady – 6/10
Crossing seemed to cause trouble but he looked a bit rusty on a few occasions too. His partnership with Ward looks promising and that’s something Burnley can work upon and turn it to their advantage.
FW: Chris Wood – 6.5/10
Took his chance well, knew what he was doing and finished it sweetly to hand the home side the advantage. He also keeps his scoring form intact.
FW: Sam Vokes – 6/10
Got a good heading chance after he was delivered a ball from the left but he just put it across the phase of the goal rather than in the net. Fosu Mensah and Dann did a nice job to keep him in-check but his partnership with Wood too looks strong enough to make a difference.
GK: Nick Pope – 6/10
He was a really lucky man as Palace’s horrendous finishing and the heroic blocks from Burnley allowed him to leave the stadium without conceding. He made only three saves over the course of 60 minutes so it speaks much about the defence and finishing too.
FW: Ashley Barnes – 5.5/10
Did not get much of the ball and was mediocre.
CM: Ashley Westwood – 5/10
Came on very late and hardly contributed anything.