Date: 7th October 2013 at 10:20am
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The Clarets remained at the top of the Championship in style after defeating last season`s Premier League boys, Reading 2-1 at Turf Moor on Saturday and notching up an incredible sixth successive victory. They now enter the international break looking down on all their rivals with 26 points from 11 games. It is their best start to a season since 1961 when they eventually finished runners-up to Ipswich in the old Division One top flight. The victory against the Royals caps off a remarkable week; a week which saw manager Sean Dyche pick up the Sky Bet Championship Manager of the Month award for September and Danny Ings get a call up to the England Under 21 squad. Leicester lost 1-0 away to Doncaster Rovers on Saturday so they are now three points behind the Clarets in third spot but thanks to a Charlie Austin brace QPR keep up the pressure on the Clarets and they are just behind them on goal difference with a game in hand. Our next home game is against QPR so what a six-pointer that could prove to be but first we go to Portman Road in two weeks time after the international break to play Ipswich Town. Against Nigel Adkin`s men on Saturday possibly the strongest opposition at the Turf so far this season, the Clarets played some sublime football and generally impressed throughout the game. A Danny Ings goal in the 21st minute following a Reading defensive blunder gave the Clarets a deserved 1-0 lead at half-time. It looked like Burnley had sealed it when Sam Vokes doubled the advantage after sliding in to score from a narrow angle with ten minutes to go. The customary nervous finish though was ensured when Reading pulled one back two minutes later after an unfortunate Shackell own goal. The Clarets held on though for another excellent three points. It is now eight wins in nine league and cup games The only worry at the end was seeing Trippier down injured after the final whistle had gone. The stretcher was called for but in the end it wasn`t needed. Hopefully he will be OK by the time we are next in action in two weeks time.

Team Sheet

As expected, Dean Marney went straight back into the starting eleven after his enforced one-match suspension against Doncaster Rovers in midweek for a fifth yellow card against Charlton at Turf Moor a week last Saturday. This was the only change and we lined-up as follows:

Heaton, Trippier, Shackell, Duff, Mee, Arfield, Marney, Jones, Kightly, Ings, Vokes

Subs: Cisak, Edgar, Stock, Long, Lafferty, Treacy, Stanislas

Full Match Report

Chester referee, Mike Jones got the game underway and it was the Clarets who started the brighter soon putting the Royals under some early pressure. Dean Marney looked threatening charging forward from midfield in these early stages with Reading defending deep and looking a little cautious. A threatening cross from Trippier split the Royals defence with the ball getting in behind the two central defenders and that blunder led to our first goal in the 21st minute. Ings got on the end of the cross to pounce from six yards out and tap the ball home past Royals keeper, Alex McCarthy to notch up his eleventh goal of the season. The Clarets were now playing some sublime football and you could see the belief the team now had in itself. Kightly had a shot blocked and then McCarthy spilled the follow-up from Jones only to grab the ball at the second attempt under pressure from Vokes. Reading did not know what had hit them! An inch-perfect cross from Marney to the far post found Arfield who saw the ball fly just wide of target after heading it back across goal. Eventually the Royals found some composure but they had been lucky to only be one goal down at this stage. Their first real chance only came in the 30th minute though but Heaton was equal to the threat tipping over a looping header from Pogrebnyak in somewhat acrobatic style. He then denied Obita with six minutes of the half remaining saving his long-range effort. The Clarets though turned up the screw again with the half coming to a close. Kightly found Wayne Bridge wanting after nicking the ball off him to find Jones. The impressive midfielder then fed Ings on the edge of the penalty area who unleashed a shot that was just inches wide. 1-0 to the Clarets then at half-time and a lead thoroughly deserved.

Neither side made any changes for the start of the second half and Burnley began the brighter again taking the game once more to the Royals. Ings set-up a two-on-one situation after robbing Alex Pearce but his pass to Arfield could have been stronger. Arfield did manage to get in a right-footed shot after checking his run but McCarthy pulled off a good save after diving low to his left. McCarthy was very much keeping Reading in the game now. The keeper parried a shot from distance from Ings and then from the follow up used his legs after Jones latched onto a pass from Arfield to concede a corner. He didn`t have much time to catch his breath and was in action again as the ball came over. Shackell towered above the rest to head the ball into the danger area and there was Ings looking certain to score from close range with his head. Somehow though, the keeper got his finger tips to the ball to push it round the post. It was a sign of how good we were playing when Adkins decided it was time to make a triple substitution in the 59th minute. It had little effect though and Burnley once again began to dominate proceedings despite a lot of somewhat ineffective Reading possession. On the hour mark, Ings nearly got his brace after latching onto a well-taken flick from his strike colleague, Sam Vokes. The former Bournemouth striker was clear on goal but yet again McCarthy denied the Clarets a second goal saving with his legs. Moments later and the twin strikers were combining well again. Ings should have done better this time after picking up the ball from a Vokes knock-down just twelve yards out. This time he blasted the ball over and Clarets fans were now getting a little anxious with one goal leads never being enough especially with a quarter of the game still remaining. Burnley fans though were soon breathing a sigh of relief when that important second goal finally game with 11 minutes to play. Kightly in the final third managed to get possession back for the Clarets and then Ings took up the mantle getting in a ball behind the flat back four to find Vokes who nonchalantly slotted up. Delirious Clarets fans were soon brought back down to earth though when from nowhere somehow Reading pulled a goal back two minutes later to set up a nervy finish. It was an own goal too after a far post header from Pogrebnyak hit Shackell`s knee to ensure the ball flew into the roof of the net. Reading kept trying but they knew it was game over when in the dying moments of the game Heaton easily mopped up a header from Gunter.

Match Stats

Burnley: Heaton, Trippier, Shackell, Duff, Mee, Arfield, Marney, Jones, Kightly, Ings, Vokes

Subs Not Used: Cisak, Edgar, Stock, Long, Lafferty, Treacy, Stanislas

Goals: Ings 21 Vokes 80

Booked: 0

Reading: McCarthy, Gunter, Pearce, Morrison, Bridge, Obita, Baird (Taylor – 58), Guthrie, Robson-Kanu (Blackman – 58), McAnuff(Le Fondre – 59), Pogrebnyak

Subs Not Used: Akpan, Kelly, Federici, Gorkss

Goai: Shackell 82 (og)

Booked: Yellow Cards for McAnuff(45 mins) and Blackman (66 mins)

Possession: 44% Burnley, 56% Reading (Source; BBC Sport)

Ref: Michael Jones (Chester)


16 Replies to “Clarets Give Reading The Royal Blues To Stay Top!”

  • It is obvious from Dyche’s previous comments that he reads all the Clarets net sites. In the 70’s, before the net, the moaners demonstrated against the then manager. He then went and got us up to the old Div 1 as champions of Div2. After, the demonstrators were gutsy enough to publically apologise to him at Turf Moor. I think it would be nice for a similar gesture to Sean after the many appalling comments about him when he was appointed and during last season, not just on here but No Nay Never etc. I’m not saying he’s going to get us up for sure but I think he’s already proved to be a fine manager and unlike OC a decent bloke – he says in the Express that he’s not bitter about being unfairly sacked at Watford ‘cos it gave him the chance to manage Burnley!

  • Dyche has done brilliant – personally never said anything bad about him – thought he would make a good manager with what he has got. Turns out he has worked a miracle. I thought Eddie Howe was all right too. I wasn’t too optimistic at the start of the season and seems I was totally wrong. The big question still remains though – will the board chip in and help strengthen? Seems like if we get a bit of extra back up -we’re certain to be there or thereabouts come May.

  • Exactly pmh! I too never recall being overly critical about Dyche. What is happening now is down to the superb management skills of Dyche and the players response. It has nothing at all to do with the Board! Our success has been achieved despite them, they now have an ideal opportunity to prove they truly do have ambition by supporting Dyche in the January window by strenghtening the squad and ensuring we retain the likes of Trips and Ings

  • It would be unthikable to lose any of our star players, before the end of the season. When who knows we may just sneak back into the big time.

  • Well yes, thats a lot of our concerns and for that we seem to be being chastised for being negative but it is crucial probably to our success or failure. The problem is the club is in debt and Premier League clubs have dosh, even though resisting could ensure we get £100 m next season if we go up. Past experience suggests they will cave in 🙁

  • If we are still in contention at Christmas I would like to think the board will move heaven and earth to make sure that all the players stay exactly where they are. I wish I’d put money on us going up this season at 16-1

  • What makes you think the club is in debt Phil. I remember the chairmen saying we were one of the very few clubs who were not in debt.

  • I don’t think we need to add many more faces to the squad, maybe another experienced striker and cover for Tripps. I’d rather the board make sure that integral players such as Ings, Vokes and Tripps are given longer contracts. Here’s an interesting stat, we had a squad of 21 when we won promotion and have 23 now.

  • Thats correct Grimsby. tmp seems to think that just coz we made a loss in one season we are in debt. That does not follow. Also he continues to unfairly blame the Board conveniently forgetting that it was their decision to appoint Dyche. So even when they clearly do something right he still says success is despite the Board.

  • The board appointed Dyche Phil ! Anyway, never mind all that, he’s a brilliant motivator and manager, and the players are clearly responding . Long may it continue, and I’m sure it will.

  • Everyone seems to talk about the Ings, Vokes & Tripps group as the key to all this and I agree BUT don’t underestimate the others e,g, Heaton, Shackell and the person we can least afford to lose SD? Mind you if we maintain this I can’t see any of them wanting to go anywhere. (That last bit was glass half full)

  • I named those 3 as most of the others have recently signed extensions or are new players but I agree we need to keep hold of Dyche.

  • One thing for sure is it’s going to test the boards resolve come January, it’s lovely to be in the bubble of us at the top of the table which is a minor miracle with such a small squad and fair play to Dyche and the players who have made it possible and long may it continue, you just feel that if an offer comes in for someone we will sell all the time and history has shown that over and over, we will see?

  • Its no use appointing good managers if you dont then back them with the resources they need or keep the key ones we already have! We shall see what happens in January! All I am saying is based on history when push comes to shove they will sell! They are in a financial pickle and unless revenue improves significantly with better gates etc, with no parachutes they may well sell to survive. Bit disappointed by Saturdays gate to be honest considering we were top..only about 11,300?

  • The really pleasing thing about this squad is the fact that there are now players on the sidelines are as good as the starting 11. We have the likes of Edgar and Long waiting for their chance, and there are others. I’m more confident now than for a long time.

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