Burnley – Crystal Palace was a tight, tense encounter at Turf Moor but the Clarets grabbed their first win of the season to get them up and running.
[ MORE: How to watch PL in the USA ]
Chris Wood’s early goal combined with Nick Pope pulling off plenty of saves saw off a lackluster Eagles side, who were missing Wilfried Zaha as he was self-isolating.
With the win Burnley move on to five points for the season, while Palace have 13.
3 things we learned
1. Burnley grind it out: This was vintage Burnley-ball. Sean Dyche’s side were hit hard by injuries and out of contract players leaving in the summer, plus a lack of incomings, and they were without a win in their opening eight games of the season. It wasn’t pretty but Burnley started well, caught Palace cold and defended resolutely. They are up and running and the injuries have subsided. Burnley should climb the table but they have some tough games in the coming weeks, so they have to build from this shutout win, even if they weren’t at their best. A win is a win and Burnley now know they are getting back to the basics which have served them so well.
2. Palace hit by Zaha’s absence: The news that Wilfried Zaha was self-isolating and wouldn’t play was a huge blow for Palace. Eberechi Eze looked very lively out wide and Palace had chances, but Burnley sat back and Palace couldn’t break them down. Had Zaha been on the pitch, you would have fancied Palace to at least get a point at Turf Moor.
3. Pope should be England’s first-choice: His stoppage time save from Benteke was brilliant and he is just so solid. Pope, 28, is pushing Jordan Pickford all the way for the number one shirt for England and he played well in the recent international break. Pope does all of the fundamental things well, dominates his box and was key in Burnley grabbing all three points.
Man of the Match: Jay Rodriguez – In a scrappy game he had that extra bit of quality to set up the only goal but also keep the ball when Burnley needed him to. He was a great outlet along with Wood.
Burnley started really well and took a deserved lead as a long ball into the box saw Jay Rodriguez flick the ball into the path of Wood brilliantly and he finished calmly to put the Clarets in front.
Rodriguez then went on a mazy run but Palace woke up after they clearly missed Zaha early, as Patrick van Aanholt did well down the left and Eberchi Eze and James McArthur combined to cross for Michy Batshuayi but he just couldn’t stretch to slide the ball home.
Batshuayi then ran at goal and dragged his shot wide, while Dwight McNeil dragged an effort wide at the other end as Andros Townsend also stung the palms of Nick Pope.
[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]
Burnley had a chance to seal the win early in the second half as McNeil found Gudmundsson but the Icelandic attacker thumped his shot off the bar.
McNeil then made a huge mistake as he played the ball back towards his own goal but it was straight to Batshuayi who was denied by Nick Pope.
Late on it was a case of Palace throwing everything at Burnley in search of an equalizer, but the Clarets held firm as Pope produced a brilliant, and brave, save to deny Christian Benteke in the 90th minute.