MIKE JACKSON’S first home game in charge of Burnley was always going to be a Thriller.
And the sight of a reborn Burnley lurking just a point below them will be enough to frighten the life out of relegation rivals Everton.
Connor Roberts broke the deadlock at Turf Moor with a fine strike into the far corner
Burnley centre-back Nathan Collins put the hosts 2-0 up against Southampton just before the break
The shock sacking of long-serving boss Sean Dyche on Good Friday seems to have galvanised the whole place.
Defenders Connor Roberts and Nathan Collins scored the first half goals to give the Clarets a massive three points in their relegation fight.
The only surprise was there were not more goals as a vibrant Turf Moor was treated to the kind of end to end game not seen here in a while.
A point against Wolves on Sunday will see Burnley out of the bottom three – albeit having played two games more.
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At least they have given themselves a genuine chance though with six matches left to play.
For the first time in almost a decade, Burnley started a game in front of their own fans without their long-serving manager in the dug-out.
There were signs at West Ham on Sunday the controversial move had liberated the squad Dyche put together – and there was more evidence here.
Mind you, the Clarets could have got off to a disastrous start as James Ward-Prowse whipped over an early corner from the right.
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Oriol Romeu was unmarked at the front post but planted his effort over the angle when he at least should have hit the target.
That was a big reprieve and the home side made the most of it.
Josh Brownhill rolled a pass in to Roberts on the edge of the box and he took a touch before curling a left-footed effort around Fraser Forster.
They used to call the former Swansea full-back the “Crynant Cafu” back in his hometown in South Wales.
His first Burnley goal was one the legendary Brazilian would have been proud of – and it was with his wrong foot.
That gave the whole place a lift and Burnley had chances to put the game out of sight.
Forster spread himself to deny Weghorst after some nifty footwork from the big Dutchman.
The Saints keeper was there again to keep out a point blank Jay Rodriguez volley with a sensational stop – before the striker’s rebound was blocked.
The Saints have won just one out of their last eight matches in all competitions
Burnley have closed the gap on 17th-placed Everton to just one point following Thursday’s win
And the big keeper was there again to keep out a header from Rodriguez after a Josh Brownhill corner.
The ball popped upto Weghorst from the rebound and he somehow managed to nod against the far post when it looked easier to score.
Those misses could easily have cost Burnley as they switched off for another flag-kick by Ward-Prowse but Romeu nodded wide of the other post this time.
But most of the chances were coming at the other end as Roberts teed up Dwight McNeil and his low 20 yard shot was pushed round the post by Forster.
The former England keeper had kept his team in it but right on the break Nathan Collins rose highest to meet a Brownhill corner and directed his header into the corner.
A VAR check was needed to see if Jack Cork was interfering with Forster’s vision as he was stood offside but the goal was allowed to stand.
What a half for Burnley. Six efforts on target – their joint highest in Prem history.
All the more impressive considering they are now without key midfielder Ashley Westwood – who confirmed on Thursday he has now had surgery on a suspected broken ankle.
Burnley thought they had a third when Jack Cork bundled in from James Tarkowski’s header across goal – but this time VAR cut the celebrations short.
At the other end Nick Pope made a great save to keep out a close range volley from Che Adams, who had only come off the bench seconds earlier.
The England keeper then tipped over a Ward-Prowse free-kick before Charlie Taylor made a super last ditch tackle to deny Adams again – and in the end Burnley saw it out comfortably.
The home fans wheeled out all their songs about Dyche to show their appreciation for what he did here.
Yet the signs are they Wanna be Starting Something now Jackson is in charge.
By: Jake Lambourne
Title: Burnley 2 Southampton 0: Roberts and Collins close gap on Everton to one point in Premier League survival boost
Sourced From: www.thesun.co.uk/sport/football/18334695/burnley-2-southampton-0-roberts-collins/
Published Date: Thu, 21 Apr 2022 20:39:46 +0000