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Football: BURNLEY SUFFER A BRUISING; Coca Cola CHAMPIONSHIP.

Byline: KEN LAWRENCE AT TURF MOOR

BURNLEY 2

McCann 31, Akinbiyi 82

SOUTHAMPTON 3

Wright-Phillips 3, Euell 15, John 51

STERN JOHN got the killer goal - but only after Burnley had played all night with a death wish.

They spent the first part of the game as if they had invited guests into an open house party, and Southampton didn't need their arms twisting.

Bradley Wright-Phillips was the first to be offered the freedom of Turf Moor.

Christian Dailly lifted the ball forward and Burnley's back four looked flat-footed and foolish as the big striker ambled forward, surely unable to believe the chase wasn't on.

It wasn't, and with just two minutes gone he was able to pick his spot past home keeper Gabor Kiraly.

In the eighth minute, John hit BOTH posts, his unmarked strike cannoning from right to left upright before falling to Kiraly.

Wright-Phillips then became the second player to hit woodwork after meeting Philip Ifil's through-ball.

That opening 13 minutes should have induced an element of defiance in the home rearguard, yet they remained in chaos.

Nathan Dyer, allowed far too much room to use his pace by left-back Stephen Jordan, sent over a cross that either keeper Kiraly or Graham Alexander could have dealt with.

But neither did and Jason Euell was able to climb high to head down and into the net.

Burnley had begun the night looking for a win to jump them into sixth place - and with talk of a takeover, it was Saints boss George Burley who might have been feeling pressure following an indifferent start to the season.

Yet it was Steve Cotterill's side that looked stressed out.

In the 32nd minute they gave themselves a toehold in the game as Chris McCann skimmed through the middle of Southampton's defence to fire home a neat right-footer.

But once again the Clarets shot themselves in the foot.

Ifil delivered a cross from the right and, just like before, the home defence turned into statues as John rose to head his side back onto easy street.

Nine minutes from the end substitute Ade Akinbiyi cut the deficit to one again, but too much damage had already been done.

HOW THEY RATED

BURNLEY

Kiraly 4, Alexander 4, Carlisle 4, Caldwell 5 (Unsworth 5), Jordan 4, Elliott 5, Spicer 5, McCann 6, Lafferty 4, Blake 4 (Mahon 5), Gray 4.

MANAGER Cotterill 4

SOUTHAMPTON

Davis 5, Ifil 7, Thomas 6, Viafara 6, Vignal 6, Dyer 8, Idiakez 6, Dailly 7, EUELL 9, Wright-Phillips 8, John 7.

MANAGER Burley 8

REFEREE N Miller 6

MAN OF THE MATCH

JASON EUELL

Class and experience plus a fine headed goal

CAPTION(S):

BRAD TIDINGS: Wright-Phillips takes the acclaim
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Sunday Mirror (London, England)
Date:Oct 28, 2007
Words:451
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