EPL

Norwich City 0-2 Burnley: Misery for nine-man Canaries

By Sports Desk July 18, 2020

Norwich City had two players sent off and scored an own goal as they fell to a 2-0 loss to Burnley at Carrow Road on Saturday. 

Emiliano Buendia was shown a straight red card in the 35th minute for striking Ashley Westwood with his arm after referee Kevin Friend watched a replay of the Argentinian's reaction to the Burnley midfielder's challenge. 

Norwich were then reduced to nine men when Josip Drmic lunged in on Erik Pieters, with Chris Wood rubbing salt into the wound by scoring an overhead kick in the attack from the resulting free-kick. 

Daniel Farke's team held firm for most of the second half but, despite being under no pressure, Ben Godfrey inexplicably touched Pieters' cross into the bottom-right corner to seal a miserable defeat. 

By inflicting Norwich's ninth straight Premier League loss, Burnley extended their unbeaten run to seven games to move two points adrift of sixth-placed Wolves.

Related items

  • Table-topping City staying calm in 'marathon' season, says Guardiola Table-topping City staying calm in 'marathon' season, says Guardiola

    Pep Guardiola was uninterested in Manchester City's ascent to the Premier League summit for the first time this season after they beat West Brom 5-0 at The Hawthorns.

    City endured a tough start to the campaign but have since won 11 games in succession in all competitions, most recently blowing the struggling Baggies away with four first-half goals on Tuesday.

    That victory was enough to take Guardiola's team to the top of the table, although Manchester United could reclaim first place by beating Sheffield United on Wednesday. City would then have a game in hand.

    This back-and-forth does not yet concern Guardiola at the season's midway stage, however.

    "The last thing I'm thinking about is the table," said the City manager. "Now I want to come back home safe, have a few days off and then Sheffield United. That's my only concern.

    "Today just finished the first leg – we have still 19 games, an incredible marathon. We are going to drop points, we are going to lose games.

    "What is important is, whatever happens, be calm – like we were when we were 12th in the table.

    "We have to understand why we didn't win a game and immediately win the next one. This is my only concern."

    City are the ninth different team to end a day top of the pile this term, a statistic that prompted Guardiola to respond: "This is the Premier League. Welcome, this is the Premier League.

    "It's so tough. You see the teams up front, then look at West Ham and the incredible season they're doing, Leicester look unbeatable, and the other teams.

    "It's so tough, so tough for everyone, and every game is complicated.

    "It's important we have a good run and say, 'Okay, this is the reason why we are here, now the next one'."

    City moved ahead of United despite missing Kevin De Bruyne and Sergio Aguero at West Brom, with Ilkay Gundogan taking centre stage with a brace before the break.

    The midfielder has scored seven league goals since December 15, making this the most productive season of his career.

    Guardiola previously described Gundogan as "one of Europe's best players" and insists the Germany international is still performing at the same level, even if his goal rush is garnering greater attention.

    "Sometimes you have to score goals to get the recognition as a football player that he was all the time," Guardiola said of his number eight, who also created a single chance, made a tackle and an interception and won all five of his duels.

    "He's an exceptional human being, first of all – I know his parents, I understand why – and he's my neighbour, so we have a connection. And he's an outstanding player.

    "He's a guy who has played as a holding midfielder – so, so clever – and when he plays close to the box, he has the right tempo to make the run.

    "It's not arriving in the box 10 times or 20 times, one metre before or one metre later, you have to arrive at the right tempo and the right time. He's so good.

    "And when he arrives, he has the calm to slow down the action to make a decision. I'm happy for him. He deserves the best."

    Gundogan has never started more than 23 games in a Premier League campaign but has always retained Guardiola's backing.

    "I would say improvement is not the case," he said.

    "Always he showed his level, except the first season when he had ACL and we struggled a lot to settle him in the team because he was injured. Every time he played, he played at a high level."

  • Ibrahimovic apologised for costly derby dismissal - Pioli Ibrahimovic apologised for costly derby dismissal - Pioli

    Zlatan Ibrahimovic apologised for the red card that cost Milan dearly in their Coppa Italia exit to rivals Inter, coach Stefano Pioli has revealed.

    Ibrahimovic, who had scored his 499th club career goal to give Milan the lead, was sent off for a second bookable offence as he felled Aleksandar Kolarov just before the hour-mark.

    Romelu Lukaku equalised from the penalty spot soon after and Christian Eriksen's stoppage-time free-kick settled a controversial Derby della Madonnina encounter.

    Ibrahimovic had earned his first yellow card in a confrontation with former Manchester United team-mate Lukaku.

    The two forwards went head-to-head in a heated exchange that saw Ibrahimovic aim offensive language in the direction of his opponent.

    It was a major misstep and Milan paid the price for Ibrahimovic's ill-discipline, but the 39-year-old was apologetic, according to his coach.

    "Ibrahimovic apologised. He knows he created a problem for the team," Pioli said. "He apologised because he is a great man and champion.

    "It's clear that the game was more difficult one man down in a game so balanced. It has been crucial. It wasn't supposed to happen but it happened unfortunately.

    "We felt the fatigue in the last 30 minutes and we didn't achieve a positive result.

    "We wanted it and we prepared for it. Now we go back to the league and to Bologna."

    Milan remain top of Serie A, two points ahead of second-placed Inter, as they aim to end a 10-year wait for the Scudetto.

  • Arteta 'very positive' about finalising Odegaard deal Arteta 'very positive' about finalising Odegaard deal

    Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta confirmed the club are close to signing Real Madrid attacking midfielder Martin Odegaard on loan as he reflected on his side's 3-1 victory over Southampton on Tuesday.

    Goals from Nicolas Pepe, Bukayo Saka and Alexandre Lacazette helped the Gunners come from behind and claim all three points at St Mary's, where they lost 1-0 in the FA Cup just three days earlier.

    The result moved Arsenal above Southampton and into eighth place in the Premier League table, and Arteta indicated his side's positive start to 2021 could soon be boosted further by Odegaard's arrival.

    "I think we are pretty close but it's not finalised as I understand it," Arteta told reporters, when asked about the 22-year-old Norwegian playmaker.

    "I haven't spoken to [Arsenal technical director Edu] or the club in the last few hours but we're very positive that we'll finalise the deal."

    After a dismal run of one victory in 10 league matches between October and December, Arsenal are unbeaten in their past five Premier League games and have won four of them.

    Arteta indicated that the upturn in form has restored belief to his squad, saying: "Football games are always judged by the result and that affects the confidence.

    "The moment that we started to win and confidence went up and we started to grow and understand each other better, we got some players back and the spirit started to lift a little bit, things were much better to be fair."

    Southampton boss Ralph Hasenhuttl lambasted his side's defending after they succumbed to a third defeat in six league games.

    Hasenhuttl told BT Sport: "It's always frustrating when you concede goals, but when it is that easy I think it hurts even more.

    "The first was a mistake in the build-up, but then still we had the chance to defend it and we didn't do it, and then the second one was similar.

    "It's not the way we can defend, we can do it much better and we know this. After being down one at half-time it's difficult to come back. We had chances to do it, but also the final quality was not good enough.

    "We know we are a good side when we play a perfect game, but today we were far off this."

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.