Manchester City picked up their 13th consecutive win, putting Burnley to the sword in typical fashion.
It was City’s eighth win in a row against Burnley in all competitions and haven’t lost to the Clarets since a 1-0 defeat at Turf Moor in March, 2015.
Gabriel Jesus and Raheem Sterling scored in the first half for the league leaders, who controlled proceedings from first whistle to last.
City could have scored more if they wanted to
It was a classic league leaders’ performance by Pep Guardiola’s side.
They got ahead and stayed there against an opposition most teams find difficult to play against.
Remember, Burnley beat Liverpool just two weeks ago.
City controlled possession in classic City style, and restricted Burnley to two efforts all game, neither of which were on target.
One area of concern for City is they weren’t as clinical throughout as usual – they have put five past Burnley four times in the last three seasons – and do seem to miss Sergio Aguero and Kevin De Bruyne, even if it is only ever so slightly.
Sterling fired an effort straight at Pope and Ilkay Gundogan flashed a drive over the bar before Jesus was felled in the box by James Tarkowski, but it was not given by Martin Atkinson or VAR.
Even Guardiola admitted to BBC Sport after the game that they weren’t looking for more goals in the last quarter of an hour of the game.
“In the last 15 minutes we passed the ball without the intent to attack, just to control.”
Burnley need goals from elsewhere
It was always going to be difficult for Sean Dyche to mastermind a win over Manchester City, but his task was made even harder with Chris Wood joining Ashley Barnes on the injury list.
Matej Vydra and Jay Rodriguez were tasked with leading the line, with the former volleying wide from a promising position.
They didn’t get the service as The Clarets only had 25% of the ball in the game, it must be said, but Burnley just can not put the ball in the back of the net.
They have a league-worst 13 goals this season and are looking directly over their shoulder at a resurgent Sheffield United as well as West Bromwich Albion and Fulham who are sitting just behind them in the Premier League.
The goals are mainly a striker’s responsibility, but there just isn’t anyone else further back who poses a goalscoring threat to oppositions.
Look at Manchester City, they have goals coming from throughout the team in Gundogan, Riyad Mahrez, who had a goal ruled out for offside, and even in defence with Joao Cancelo and John Stones finding the net recently.
Burnley don’t have that.
They have aerial threat, and some great set piece takers. They don’t get the ball forward enough to utilise this, though.
Tarkowski and Ben Mee are brilliant in the air and have scored goals or played a big part in setting them up from the fear they strike into defences when they are attacking a set piece.
But that is the main weapon and, as effective as it was, the long ball into the box doesn’t seem to be working anymore.
Dwight McNeil needs to score more goals, Johann Berg Gudmundsson needs to score more goals, even Barnes and Wood need to score more goals.
This club just needs goals, and it was surprising and somewhat disappointing they didn’t add more firepower in the January transfer window.
Big games coming up for both teams
Burnley and Manchester City are both in contrasting situations and both have big games up next for very different reasons.
Burnley host Brighton and Hove Albion on Saturday (3pm GMT, Sky Sports Premier League) looking to move back above the Seagulls who leapfrogged them by beating the Champions themselves in midweek.
City travel to Anfield to face Liverpool themselves on Sunday (4:30pm GMT, Sky Sports Premier League) looking to add further distance back to the defending champions.
The Clarets will want a big response and hopefully some more goals to put some daylight between themselves and the bottom three.
Manchester City will look to further increase their lead at the top of the Premier League table, and increase the gap over Liverpool to 10 points with a game in hand.
It will be a big weekend at both ends of the table.