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    Burnley 2-0 Liverpool Match Report

    Liverpool failed to build upon last weekend's dazzling display against Arsenal as first-half goals from Sam Vokes and Andre Gray gave Burnley a first league win over The Reds for 42 years.

    Jurgen Klopp's side dominated possession but they failed to create the clear-cut opportunities that their territorial supremacy warranted despite having 26 efforts on goal throughout the afternoon.

    It was Liverpool's calamitous defending, however, and not their profligacy in front of goal which proved most damaging as Burnley ruthlessly exposed the weaknesses in the away team's defence to secure the win.

    The match was only two minutes old when Nathaniel Clyne's lacklustre ball out of defence was intercepted by Andre Gray and his pass found Sam Vokes, whose strike from 20 yards flew past Simon Mignolet.

    The former Wolves forward still had plenty to do when he received the ball outside the penalty area, with his back to goal, but his turn and subsequent thunderbolt gave his team the ideal start to the encounter.

    The away side responded strongly to going a goal behind but were unable to find space in-behind the Burnley back four and were reduced by the opposition to trying their luck from long-range.

    Philippe Coutinho attempted two speculative efforts from outside the penalty area, which failed to trouble Tom Heaton, while Daniel Sturridge's first-time strike from 20 yards went narrowly wide of Heaton's right-hand post.

    It was Sturridge who was culpable for Burnley taking a two-goal lead on 37 minutes when he conceded possession to Steven Ward on the edge of the Clarets' penalty area and Andre Gray scored from the resulting counter-attack.

    Belgian international debutant Steven Defour ran half the length of the field and picked out Gray, who came inside Jordan Henderson and Ragnar Klavan before coolly slotting the ball into the bottom left-hand corner.

    Liverpool's dominance in possession continued after the break as Roberto Firmino, Daniel Sturridge and Philippe Coutinho all unleashed speculative efforts but Burnley again held firm and mainly reduced The Reds to long-range potshots.

    Firmino's swerving effort from 25 yards was saved by Heaton at full-stretch, while Sturridge struck high and wide a minute later and Coutinho's first-time volley from distance also failed to test the former Manchester United trainee.

    Burnley had only three efforts on goal throughout the entire contest and Andre Gray wasn't able to match the success of his side's two previous strikes when he fired wide from the edge of the penalty area midway through the second-half.

    Jurgen Klopp's team ended the game strongly and Heaton's agility was tested when he tipped over Marko Grujic's effort from the edge of the penalty area, while Georginio Wijnaldum headed wide in the closing seconds.

    Liverpool ended the game with 81 per cent of the possession, setting a new record for the highest total of any losing side since OPTA started measuring the statistic 13 years ago.

    While last Sunday's win over Arsenal promised to be the start of a new dawn for Liverpool, it was an all-too familiar story as the same defensive problems that have plagued the club for a number of seasons reared their heads once again.

    Alberto Moreno, who endured a torrid first-half against Arsenal, was dropped in favour of James Milner but it was Moreno's opposite full-back Nathaniel Clyne who was at fault for the early goal from which The Reds never recovered.

    Liverpool also lacked the pace of Sadio Mane, who missed the match with a shoulder injury, and his absence enabled the more methodical and considered approach to play into the home side's hands.

    While Sean Dyche's team presented a clinic on how to win a football match without having the ball, they will be all-too aware that repeating this particular feat with 19 per cent of the possession will be extremely difficult.

    The Clarets return to Premier League action on Saturday afternoon when they face Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, while Liverpool travel to White Hart Lane in the lunchtime kick-off to play Tottenham Hotspur.
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    Item Reviewed: Burnley 2-0 Liverpool Match Report Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Richard Tufft
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