Analysis: Burnley need more support for the lone striker if they are going to halt recent dip

Analysis: Burnley need more support for the lone striker if they are going to halt recent dip

The Clarets slipped to a second defeat in three matches after lacking bite in attack against Leicester City.

Chris Lincoln

Not very often this season have Burnley matched their opponents statistically. Yet Saturday saw Leicester City see just 4% more of the ball, formulate only one more shot and actually test the goalkeeper on less occasions.

Loss of Brady will be a huge blow

However, it is these fixtures that the Clarets are finding challenging to gain three points from. Sean Dyche's side are set up to contain and sneak a goal on the break, making the most of minimal time on the ball.

They did appear to have some creativity in the form of Robbie Brady before the Irishman was stretchered off with a nasty looking injury after 25 minutes. Burnley had responded offensively to Demarai Gray's early opener and formulated seven shots on goal within that period, with Brady at the centre of most of their play.

Yet the Clarets seemed bereft of ideas in the absence of their left-winger. Johann Berg Gudmundsson looked the most dangerous outlet on the other side of the pitch but was unable to create too many telling options, mainly due to the lack of runners in attack. In contrast, Leicester spent over 40% of their time attacking down the same flank but Marc Albrighton had plenty of players to pick out in the Burnley penalty area.

Hendrick must get closer to the lone striker

Chris Wood manufactured just one shot throughout the contest, touching the ball in the box just four times before he was replaced. Yet the support from midfield was few and far between. None of the central trio, Jeff Hendrick, Jack Cork or Steven Defour, had one touch inside the Leicester penalty area. In fact, Burnley only really offered a threat close to Kasper Schmeichel's goal when Ashley Barnes was introduced in an attacking substitution for Defour midway through the second period.

At the other end, Jamie Vardy struggled to make space against the close attention of Ben Mee and James Tarkowski, as numerous Premier League strikers have done this season.

Vardy spent a lot of his time dropping off the front and picking up the ball deeper in midfield. However, it was Gray's willingness to run past him from attacking midfield that made the difference. The English youngster, who usually plays as a winger, possessed the desire and passion to impress his manager and touched the ball nine times in the Burnley box, netting once and hitting the post on another occasion.

It is now two defeats in three for Burnley as their lack of creativity in attack begins to show. With Brady set to be sidelined for a substantial period, it could be a long few Winter months for the Clarets if they want to maintain their position in the top half of the table.