Blackburn 0-1 Burnley: Match Report

24 October 2015 02:01

Arfield winner sinks Blackburn and hands Burnley derby spoils

Scott Arfield's second-half winner ensured Burnley claimed back-to-back wins over Blackburn for the first time in 36 years as they sealed a 1-0 east Lancashire derby success.

After going 35 years without defeating their neighbours, the Clarets won the most recent fixture between these two in 2014 en route to promotion to the Premier League.

That season sampling the top-flight's wealth had led Rovers manager Gary Bowyer to suggest the "tables had turned" in a rivalry that Blackburn had dominated for years but, for long periods at Ewood Park, it was the hosts who created more.

However, moments after Tom Lawrence and Jordan Rhodes had squandered brilliant openings, Arfield curled home his first of the season, and the first by a visiting side at Ewood in five games, as Sean Dyche's men took the bragging rights back across the M65.

Rhodes' record in this fixture is impressive, with three goals in his previous four derby appearances, and his first sniff of goal came in the 10th minute when a flick from Markus Olsson's cross went just over the top.

But the biggest talking point of the first period came when Joey Barton felt he should have won a penalty.

The ex-Manchester City midfielder spun in the area and went down under pressure from Grant Hanley, who connected with his trailing leg. While referee Keith Stroud deemed any contact accidental, he failed to spot what looked a more purposeful trip from the Scotland international on the same player as the two ran back up field together.

At the other end Lawrence drilled an effort from the edge of the area which Tom Heaton dealt with down to his left before Barton was involved in another penalty shout, this time at the other end, when Lawrence took a tumble. As before, Stroud remained unmoved.

Rhodes' clever movement was causing the two Clarets centre-backs issues and a header from Craig Conway's cross once again narrowly missed the target. The striker did get a sight of goal again before the interval, but, afforded time and space on the edge of the area, he ballooned his attempt well over.

At the start of the second half Lawrence wasted a glorious opportunity to score for Blackburn in front of the travelling support.

He laid the ball into Rhodes and continued his run, with the Scot unselfishly rolling the ball back into the Welshman, who blazed over when one-on-one with Heaton.

The hosts continued to push for an opener, Corry Evans rifling inches past a post and Rhodes, with the best of his four chances yet, hitting a weak attempt straight at Heaton after turning inside Michael Keane in the box.

But Blackburn were punished for their profligacy 63 minutes in. David Jones' free-kick was not dealt with by the hosts and Ben Mee teed up Arfield to curl into the top corner of Jason Steele's net for a goal that he celebrated by running the length of the pitch to the Burnley fans.

Still Rovers came, Hope Akpan heading a Ben Marshall cross at Heaton, Craig Conway lashing a terrific effort from range against the crossbar and Shane Duffy firing over.

And, deep into added time, Duffy, now playing up front, saw his header thwarted by Heaton as Burnley held on.


Source: PA


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