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Club News

FIVE THINGS: BURNLEY

17 December 2017

Paul Hazlewood
Albion's players jostle for positions from a corner.

Getting gritty for the clean sheet
Albion had conceded nine in the last three games, but their determined performance on Saturday afternoon saw a return of structure and organisation. In truth, the home side didn’t have to defend for large periods – they boasted 58% possession – but when called upon, the backline and Maty Ryan were impermeable.

They made 36 clearances in all, and Shane Duffy will be missed against Watford after a fifth yellow card of the season sidelines him.

Nullifying the returning clan
Chris Wood, Ashley Barnes and Sam Vokes all featured for Burnley – returning to a patch they once called home.

The former two made two thirds of a triumvirate with Glenn Murray in the 2010/11 League One championship-winning campaign. Lewis Dunk and Duffy had their numbers, however, marking tightly and reducing Burnley to only two memorable openings.

Ryan to the rescue
Ryan made crucial saves once again when Albion needed him most, saving brilliantly from Jeff Hendrick in the first half and then again in the second half when Wood found himself through on goal.

Burnley had six shots on target but none could find their way past the big man. Boss Chris Hughton praised him, saying: "He's given us those big moments to keep us in the game at crucial times."

Burnley show it’s possible
Burnley have made an admirable transition from Championship to the Premier League the past two years – something Albion can aspire to.

On the topic, Burnley manager Sean Dyche said: “Brighton had a really solid start and now they're searching for results, and that can happen - it can happen to anyone. I like Chris, I like his team. There's a good unit there, they really give a lot to the cause. There's a lot to like.”

Goals will come
While Albion are finding it hard to hit the back of the net at the moment, they can't be faulted for a lack of creativity, as Anthony Knockaert and Solly March showed for much of the game.

Hughton mentioned the Seagulls needed to find a "formula" to win games but are playing at a high level, a point Maty Ryan seconds: “You've got to be worried when you're not creating chances but we certainly are, we get into the final area, it's hard to put a finger on what it is, we can't get that last bit of composure or delivery.”


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