Arsenal took all three points at Turf Moor where their hosts seemed more concerned with fouling and booing than trying to win the game.
Arsenal lined up with the same starting XI who faced Liverpool last week, Gabriel missing out entirely with illness as, thankfully, Laurent Koscielny passing his fitness test.
The first half was more than a little bitty with Burnley fouling Arsenal every five seconds and their fans booing Arsenal for being fouled. It was like being at Stoke, only with less drool.
It was one of those games where the Burnley peeps decided to emulate their Orc counterparts for the day by refusing to see the fact that the referee let their team away with a number of clear yellows. Tug, tug, tug.
Ramsey’s goal in the 11th minute was the difference between the two sides at the break, a scrappy goal, but the sort that Arsenal usually contrive to miss so that’s progress. A few shots in the box before the ball finally rebounded to the Welshman who was smart and went high to avoid the flying Burnley bodies. He pointed to the heavens as it hit the back of the net, a nod, no doubt, to his Nan who recently passed away.
For the next 35 minutes there was nothing to report apart from Burnley fans being morons and thinking their team should be allowed to foul with impunity. Pass, pass, foul, whistle, pass, pass, handball, whistle, pass, pass, shove, whistle. They ended the half with two yellows when they could have, probably should have, had five at least.
It was frustrating for all involved, but for very different reasons.
The second half was more of the same, Burnley fans booing Arsenal for being fouled while cheering when they got a foul or an offside as if they were being denied regularly (they weren’t). It was tedious and they got themselves more than a little worked up at something that was entirely in their own head.
I expected more from them.
I’m talking about the fans mostly because that was the standout thing from what was a poor game, perhaps unsurprisingly given Burnley’s insistence on fouling regularly. There was no flow.
As predicted, around the 75-minute-mark, Burnley started to tire and Arsenal grew into the game as Burnley didn’t have the energy to foul as much but they were unable to find the killer second but found themselves facing very little threat from their hosts, bar one clear chance with which they should have scored.
The important thing was that Arsenal left with all the points and they did without any real drama and became the first team to win eight games in a row in the league this season.
Over to you Manchester.