Ashley Barnes

Barrington Coombs/PA via AP

Transfer rumor roundup: Strikers for strugglers

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The Premier League’s transfer window has only a few days left, and strikers are on the menu this Sunday night.

[ MORE: Aubameyang’s Arsenal fee close ]

Sky Sports’ Transfer Centre says West Bromwich Albion is hoping to pry unhappy Watford hero Troy Deeney from Vicarage Road to the Hawthorns for $23 million.

Deeney joined Watford from League One side Walsall in 2010, and has scored 109 goals for the club in its rise from the Championship to the Premier League. He scored 13 goals in first PL season, 10 his second, but has netted just twice in 15 league contests this season.

Speaking of strikers moving between Premier League sides, Crystal Palace is pursuing Burnley striker Ashley Barnes. The 28-year-old has been at Turf Moor since 2014, and has 14 Premier League goals in three seasons. Sky says Burnley would not have much interest in selling Barnes, whose head may already be turned after unexpected rumors of Chelsea interest.

With Feyenoord playing hardball over its Nicolai Jorgensen fee, The Daily Mail says Newcastle United is looking at another strike option in the form of Viktoria Plzen center forward Michael Krmencik.

The 6-foot-3 striker is valued at $14 million, having scored 16 goals in 20 matches across all competitions. Three of those have come in the Europa League, and two in Champions League qualification.

Magpies manager Rafa Benitez also wants Martin Dubravka of Sparta Prague to challenge Karl Darlow and Rob Elliot between the sticks at St. James’ Park.

Manchester United 2-2 Burnley: Lingard leads comeback

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  • Teams drew 0-0 last year at OT
  • Burnley goes up after two minutes
  • Defour doubles lead through free kick
  • Lingard scores twice in second half

Jesse Lingard‘s second half double led Manchester United back for a 2-2 draw with Burnley at Old Trafford on Tuesday.

Ashley Barnes and Steven Defour had scored to give the Clarets a halftime lead.

United is now 13 points back of Man City before the leaders play Tuesday at Newcastle United, while the point keeps Burnley seventh.

The Red Devils held a 23-3 edge in shots and 72 percent possession, but only scored the equalizer in stoppage time.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Marcos Rojo gave away a free kick to Jeff Hendrick inside of 70 seconds, and Burnley made the most of the opportunity.

Poor defending in the six allowed Barnes to rifle the ball behind De Gea.

Nick Pope punched a Juan Mata free kick toward the back corner flag, and Phil Bardsley chopped down Zlatan Ibrahimovic to give United another set piece.

Corners followed, and Burnley could not escape its third. When it did, though, it found an answer. Defour swept a free kick over the wall and beyond the flying hand of De Gea to make it 2-0 in the 36th minute.

Pogba carried away from Defour to curl a shot just away from the upper 90 as United sought a way back into the match.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

United’s crowd and all on television though the Red Devils had pulled one back through Jesse Lingard, and it’d take replays to see what went wrong. Pope got his face on Lingard’s in tight shot.

Lingard did get his goal within moments, though, back heeling Ashley Young‘s pass just inside the far post for 2-1 in the 54th.

Bardsley saw yellow for a sliding tackle in the 69th minute, one which easily could’ve been his second, and Pogba lorded over a free kick. The French wizard hammered his shot just over the bar.

Lingard connected with an equalizer in the first minute of stoppage time which was entirely deserved against a resolute Burnley back line.

PL AT HALF: Burnley shocking Man Utd; Huddersfield ahead

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The goals haven’t been as free-flowing as they were in a seven-goal Boxing Day kickoff between Tottenham Hotspur and Southampton, but we’ve got some markers around the ground in England, including a pair of eye-opening markers at Old Trafford.

[ STREAM: Every PL game live here ]

Manchester United 0-2 Burnley

A lively start for the visitors coupled with poor set piece defending allowed Ashley Barnes to put Burnley ahead at Old Trafford, and United controlled play but had even less to show for it when Steven Defour curled his free kick past a flying David De Gea.

Bournemouth 1-1 West Ham United

James Collins‘ early headed goal has been answered by Dan Gosling playing trash collector in the box as we’re level at the Vitality Stadium.

Watford 1-1 Leicester City

The Riyad Mahrez Renaissance continues, with the Algerian scoring from a terrific Marc Albrighton cross. Molla Wague answered just before halftime for the Hornets.

Huddersfield Town 1-0 Stoke City

Tom Ince has the Terriers ahead, and goalkeeper Jonas Lossl has done a bit to keep them there.

Chelsea 0-0 Brighton and Hove Albion
West Bromwich Albion 0-0 Everton

Burnley 1-0 Stoke City: Barnes’ late strike guides Clarets into top four

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Don’t look now, but the Clarets have climbed into the Premier League top four.

Burnley found a way Stoke City late on Tuesday, picking up a 1-0 win at the Turf Moor behind Ashley Barnes‘ late finish.

[ MORE: Gremio reaches Club World Cup final, awaits Real Madrid or Al Jazira ]

The Clarets, who have now secured 31 points over their first 17 matches this season, leapfrogged Liverpool, Arsenal and Tottenham with the victory. However, all three sides will be in action on Wednesday.

Steven Defour nearly put Burnley ahead on 69 minutes, when the front man tested Stoke keeper Jack Butland — who had to make a sprawling save to his right.

While Stoke mustered up several quality chances, it was Johann Berg Gudmundsson’s blast in the first half that nearly found the top left corner.

Next up for Burnley will be a date against Brighton on Saturday, while Stoke travels to Huddersfield the same day.

Burnley’s Barnes: “Can we finish the season now?”

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Ashley Barnes broke his season duck in classy fashion, scoring and adding an assist as Burnley stayed in the thick of the race for Europe with a 2-0 win over Swansea City at Turf Moor on Saturday.

[ RECAP: Burnley 2-0 Swans ]

The win shouldn’t be a surprise, as Burnley is humming in style. The Clarets entered the day with a win at Chelsea and draws at Liverpool and Spurs, so why would a visit from Swansea lead to anything than three points.

It’s dream world, really.

From the BBC:

“We’re on a fantastic run. We’re working hard every day and today we were different class.

“Can we finish the season now? No, I’m kidding. there’s still a long way to go and we need to pick up as many points as possible.”

Every win makes more and more believers of the Burnley Football Club. Perhaps more important to the Clarets, each win makes it less likely that Sean Dyche will leave the club for a better gig (Everton), at least right now.