Norwich 0 Burnley 2: Nine-man Canaries see Buendia and Drmic sent-off by VAR in first-half in Carrow Road horror show

NICK POPE had another day to remember as he kept yet another clean sheet as already-relegated Norwich fell to pieces at Carrow Road.

The Burnley keeper is now one ahead of Ederson in the race to win the Golden Glove for the most shut-outs in the Premier League.

Buendia was sent off for clearly elbowing Westwood

Drmic was then sent off for a lunge on Pieters

Wood shinned his overhead kick attempt – but it still went in

And the 28-year-old will no doubt settle for being known for his goalkeeping abilities rather than his prowess in the bedroom.

Sky pundit Efan Ekoku’s on air blunder early in game certainly provided expert insight no-one was expecting when he said: “This guy’s pretty special between the sheets”, before correcting himself to much laughter in the studio.

He is indeed special between the sticks and enhanced his growing reputation with a brilliant reflex save denied Ben Godfrey from close range while the score was goalless.

Then thanks to the blundering Canaries getting two players sent off before the break, the England man was handed an easy ride to secure clean sheet No15, one ahead in his personal duel with his Manchester City rival.

The game was 35 minutes in when Ashley Westwood went down holding his head after a clash with Emiliano Beundia and initially referee Kevin Friend thought nothing of the incident.

But VAR Lee Mason whispered in his ear to consult his pitchside monitor and within five seconds of doing so Friend showed red.

In a season when pitchside monitors have not been used enough it was ironic that this is the second time this season it has been used at Carrow Road.

That red was harsh – the one that followed just before the break for Josip Drmic was not.

The striker launched into a reckless challenge on Erik Pieters and Friend wasted little time in reducing Norwich to ten.

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As if to punish relegated Norwich still further, Burnley took the lead within a minute as Chris Wood’s overhead-kick shinner crept past Tim Krul in the home net.

Krul had earlier produced a wonderful reflex stop to beat away Dwight McNeil’s deflected free-kick, but on this occasion the Dutchman should have done much better.

At least that brought to a temporary end the barking voice of Sean Dyche echoing around the empty stadium constantly criticising every decision the ref was making.

With a two-man advantage the second half turned into an attack versus defence practice match, Norwich gainfully working as hard as possible to stop being routed.

For highly-fancied players like Todd Cantwell and Max Aarons, this might well be their final appearance at home for the club and they will have wanted a better send off than having to chase their tails all game.

Pieters was the first to go close to doubling the Burnley lead with a rasping drive which Krul did well to tip over.

And the keeper was at it again, this time with his legs, to block Jay Rodriguez from close range as the brave yellow wall in front of him showed signs of weakening under the barrage.

For a side relegated because they were too easy to score against, Norwich actually turned in a sterling effort to restrict the Clarets to  a series of pot shots from distance which never troubled Krul.

Burnley enjoyed a simple afternoon in Norfolk

Drmic was sent off for going in with his studs up

But when the second did come, it pretty much summed the Canaries up.

There was no Burnley player within five yards of the ball whipped into the box by Pieters from the left, but Godfrey inexplicably turned the ball into his own net.

In a moment of madness, all the hard work was undone – which has too often been the case over the past 12 months.

Then, after doing absolutely nothing for over half an hour, Pope was suddenly called into action to protect his clean sheet and did so brilliantly to get a hand to Onel Hernandez’s deflected shot.

The shutout secured, Pope was then free to go home to bed – where whatever happens should never be disclosed!


By: Duncan Wright
Title: Norwich 0 Burnley 2: Nine-man Canaries see Buendia and Drmic sent-off by VAR in first-half in Carrow Road horror show
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Published Date: Sat, 18 Jul 2020 18:25:00 +0000

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