Burnley 2-0 Swansea City: Clarets move within a point of the top four

A third consecutive victory ensures Burnley remain level on points with Liverpool and Arsenal.

Burnley 2-0 Swansea City: Clarets move within a point of the top four
Jack Cork opens the scoring (photo: Getty Images / Athena Pictures)
Burnley
2 0
Swansea City
Burnley: Pope; Lowton, Tarkowski, Mee, Ward; Berg Gudmundsson, Defour, Cork, Brady, Hendrick (Vokes 80); Barnes
Swansea City: Fabianski; Naughton, Fernandez, Mawson, Olsson; Fer (Ki Sung-yueng 70), Clucas, Renato Sanches, Dyer; Abraham (Narsingh 82), Ayew (Bony 45)
SCORE: 1-0 Cork 29, 2-0 Barnes 40

Jack Cork netted against his former club as Burnley moved within one point of the Champions League places with their third successive Premier League victory.

Two moments of quality give the hosts control

Despite several players returning from the international break dejected after their nations failed to qualify for next summer's World Cup, Burnley played with confidence throughout the entire contest, knocking the ball around with quality and ease.

Other than a nervy moment that saw Matt Lowton swipe a clearance just over his own crossbar, the hosts were in control of the contest throughout the first half.

Lukasz Fabianski was called into action twice in quick succession as he reacted quickly to prevent the ball sneaking over his line as a goalmouth scramble followed a dangerous Robbie Brady corner. He then produced an excellent diving save to thwart Ashley Barnes' header from Lowton's cross.

However, a great team move opened the deadlock for the hosts as they once again proved they can string together a compelling short passing game. Cork played the ball to Barnes after driving forward and he, in turn, fed Brady. The Irish winger then produced a delightful cross to pick out Cork who timed his run to perfection before glancing a header into the back of the net for his first Burnley goal.

The visitors could not issue a response and it took just eleven minutes for Burnley to double their lead and score a rare second goal. Jeff Hendrick robbed Sam Clucas in the centre of midfield before picking out Barnes. The striker controlled the ball before firing a distant half-volley off the post and into the back of the net.

Martin Olsson did see a strike brilliantly blocked by James Tarkowski just before the break but the first 45 minutes undoubtedly belonged to the hosts.

Limited response from the visitors

Burnley picked up where they left off after half-time and almost scored a third from a more direct move. Nick Pope picked out Hendrick with a long punt down the pitch only for the attacking midfielder to be blocked by Fabianksi.

Swansea slowly began to venture further forward as Tammy Abraham had a goalbound effort blocked by Ben Mee before substitute Wilfried Bony dragged an effort wide.

Yet the hosts changed their tactics to contain and were typically tough to break down as has been the case all season. Swansea were unable to produce any dangerous moves of note as Renato Sanches endured a game to forget. Abraham struggled on with a back injury for 20 minutes but took away the focal point of the visitors' attack.

It was Burnley who went closest to scoring again as Tarkowski had an effort ruled out by a tight offside decision as Swansea failed to clear their lines.

Eventually, with 95 minutes on the clock, Swansea produced their first shot on target but Bony's header was straight at Pope.

As the final whistle blew, Sean Dyche's side could reflect on a comfortable victory to leave them with maximum points from their last three games, whilst Swansea remain rooted in the relegation zone after their sixth defeat in seven.