Burnley 4 v 2 Peterborough United (FA Cup – Third Round)
Darren Ferguson brought his Peterborough United side to Turf Moor this lunchtime for the Clarets second consecutive home game of the year. Having played Manchester City in the previous two seasons the Clarets were looking forward to playing a different side in the FA Cup (3rd Round). Sean Dyche made eight changes from the side that lost to Aston Villa on New Years Day whilst Posh included new loan signing Reece Brown.
After a tough run over the Christmas period and news this week that there is unlikely to be any new signings arriving at the club during the January transfer window, the home fans were looking for a positive start against Sky Bet League One opponents and the Clarets made their superiority tell from the start as they threatened to put the tie to bed inside the first quarter of an hour.
Rodriguez’s first goal after just eight minutes lacked the star quality of his earlier effort but it was still of importance as it immediately settled any potential anxiety following three successive Premier League defeats. The ball bounced around the visitors box after a couple of efforts at goal Jay Rodriguez slotted the ball passed Pym to make it 1-0.
Just three minutes after the goal the Clarets almost added a second as Peterborough made a hash of clearing Jay Rodriguez’s ball into the box and Johann Gudmundsson forced another excellent save from Christy Pym in the visitors goal.
Then on fifiteen minutes, the Clarets extended their lead in spectacular style. Again the Peterborough defence was stretched by some expansive football and when they cleared the ball as far as Pieters, the left-back chested the ball down and cracked a superb left footed volley into the bottom corner from thirty yards to claim his first Clarets goal and give the Clarets a two goal lead.
On loan midfielder Reece Brown had the first effort at goal for the visitors on twenty two minutes, when he found himself one-on-one with Joe Hart but the youngster could only drag his effort across the goalkeeper and wide of the far post.
The Clarets added a third goal on twenty-three minutes as midfielder Jeff Hendrick hit a shot from the edge of the Peterborough box and the ball took a deflection of defender Mark Beevers before flying passed Christy Pym to make it 3-0.
Peterborough United pulled a goal back six minutes before the interval, Matt Lowton’s mis-directed header was collected by Toney who went around Joe Hart and slotted the ball into an empty net to make the half-time score 3-1.
Clarets boss Sean Dyche was forced into a change at half-time with Johann Gudmundsson make way for Charlie Taylor due to injury. At the start of the second-half the visitors had an excellent chance to pull back another goal following a superb ball from former Claret George Boyd which found Toney in space but his effort was well saved by Joe Hart.
Burnley responded by killing off any prospect of a comeback with a classy fourth goal converted by Rodriguez. It was a tidy finish, angled back across Pym into the far corner, but owed everything to a lovely reverse pass from Aaron Lennon which got Rodriguez in behind Peterborough’s back line with a perfectly timed run.
Lennon was enjoying his afternoon and tried to set up Rodriguez for his hat-trick when he might have gone for goal himself to increase the lead further. Peterborough weren’t quite finished yet as substitute Ricky Jones volleyed in from close range after Pieters had cleared off the line.
Jeff Hendrick clipped the visitors crossbar with an injury-time free-kick to almost finish in style, the Clarets came out 4-2 to go into Monday evenings 4th Round draw.
Speaking after the match manager Sean Dyche said, “It was a good performance and we knew we could affect them offensively, which we did very early in the game. We’ve had a tough period and there wasn’t any sign of that today it was a very confident performance.
I thought the energy of the side was important so that we could get out in front. It was a very professional performance from all the team, we have had a tough Christmas period and we have tough games coming, but we took it seriously today and we’ll be looking for that again in the next round of the FA Cup.”
Burnley – Hart, Lowton, Long, Tarkowski, Pieters, Hendrick, Cork, Lennon, Wood, Gudmundsson, Rodriguez (Subs) Peacock-Farrell, Mee, Taylor, Westwood, Bardsley Koiki, Vydra
Peterborough – Pym, Butler, Beevers, Elsa, Maddison, Brown, Reed, Bennett, Toney Boyd, Mason (Subs) Kent, O’Malley, Ward, Barker, Burrows, Jones, Tasdemir
Goals – (Burnley) Rodriguez (2), Pieters, Hendrick (Peterborough) Toney, Jones
Attendance – 8,043