Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Burnley 1-2 Nottingham Forest: Wood at the double to sink relegated Clarets

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 19 May 2024

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Nottingham Forest left nothing to chance as they overcame Burnley 2-1 to cap off a difficult Premier League campaign.

Forest’s safety was not mathematically confirmed heading into the final day, even though it was never likely that Luton Town would manage to flip the goal difference in their favour.

But 17th-placed Forest ensured they did their bit regardless against the already-relegated Clarets, with Chris Wood’s first-half double doing the damage at Turf Moor.

Josh Cullen’s deflected attempt gave Burnley hope, but the visitors held firm to finish six points clear of the bottom three.

Forest needed just 76 seconds to open the scoring – Anthony Elanga bursting down the right flank and sending a low cross into the six-yard box, where Wood was waiting to tap home.

It was 2-0 just 12 minutes later, as Wood reacted sharply to turn in Ryan Yates’ shot.

While the goal was initially disallowed for offside, that decision was overturned after a VAR review, with Wood having managed to keep himself the right side of the last man.

Zeki Amdouni should have done better when teed up by Jacob Bruun Larsen, but the Swiss forward blazed over.

Wood had the chance to complete his hat-trick two minutes into the second half, only to send a tame header straight at Arijanet Muric.

Burnley’s goalkeeper was forced into a tougher save by Morgan Gibbs-White soon after, as he tipped over the playmaker’s dipping long-range strike.

Wilson Odobert tried his luck from distance at the other end around the hour, with the winger’s effort skimming just wide of Matz Sels’ goal.

Burnley’s luck changed in the 72nd minute – Cullen’s hopeful attempt diverting in off a defender, with Sels left helpless.

There was to be no final-day comeback for the Clarets, though, as they prepare for life in the second tier.

Wood haunts the Clarets

Wood is Burnley’s highest-ever Premier League goalscorer, having netted 49 times for the Clarets between 2017 and 2022.

However, with his opener, he became the fifth player to score a Premier League goal against Burnley having previously played for them in the competition, after Andre Gray, Danny Ings, Michael Keane and Patrick Bamford.

That goal was brilliantly created by Elanga, who has now set up Wood for six goals this season – the most assists by one player for a single team-mate across the division.

With his double, Wood will end the season with 14 goals in the league – his best return since 2019-20.

Clarets head to the Championship with a whimper

Burnley had hope when they strung together a decent run across March and April, yet Vincent Kompany’s team have ultimately come unstuck in the run-in.

With relegation already confirmed, the pressure was off heading into Sunday’s game, but Burnley could not make the most of playing with that freedom.

The hosts did at least get on the scoresheet thanks to that Cullen effort, meaning they scored for a sixth straight Premier League match – their longest such run since a streak of nine matches between March and May 2021.

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