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When Burnley drew 2-2 against West Brom last season, Sam Vokes won his first man of the match award of the season while also winning the player ratings. He followed that up with winning both in the next, and last two games of the season, against Bournemouth and West Ham and has now carried on where he left off and made it four out of four following the win at Chelsea last Saturday.

Those four games have brought him six goals and it is hard to believe that prior to the West Brom game, a penalty at Everton apart, he hadn’t scored since he got the winner against Leicester in January.

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Sam was certainly not the only player to have a good game at Chelsea but he bagged the first and third goals as we tore the champions apart in the first half and fully deserves to win the man of the match and ratings.

He polled 42% of the vote in what was really a two horse race with Belgian midfielder Steven Defour. This might not have been Defour’s best Burnley performance but it certainly was on the road and in the period when we were on top I don’t think I’ve seen him play better for us.

Defour secured 35% while third and fourth places went to two of our defenders, James Tarkowski claiming third place with 8% and just behind him in fourth place was Stephen Ward who won 7% of the vote, and there can be no mention of Ward without referencing his spectacular goal, Burnley’s second.

It was a personal best in the player ratings for Vokes. He won it with a rating of 9.17 out of 10. That was higher than any of those three ratings at the end of last season and the only time he’s rated higher than that in the game was in February 2014 when we beat Nottingham Forest 3-1 at home. On that occasion he rated at 9.31.

The three players right behind him in the top four all won ratings of more than eight. Defour was again second with 8.88 and Ward was in third place this time with a rating of 8.54. Last season’s player of the year Ben Mee got his first point of the season with fourth place; his rating was 8.13 out of 10.

Vokes, therefore, is the first leader in the Up the Clarets Player of the Year Table having won the maximum ten points. Behind him are Defour with six points, Ward with three, Tarkowski two and one point for Mee.

Saturday brings the first home game of the season against West Brom and the vote will be underway around an hour after the final whistle.

The Chelsea result is below with the first player of the year table of 2017/18.

MAN OF THE MATCH

42% – Sam Vokes
35% – Steven Defour
8% – James Tarkowski
7% – Stephen Ward
3% – Jack Cork
2% – Ben Mee
2% – Robbie Brady
1% – Jeff Hendrick
0% – Tom Heaton
0% – Matt Lowton
0% – Johann Berg Gudmundsson

PLAYER RATINGS

9.17 – Sam Vokes
8.88 – Steven Defour
8.54 – Stephen Ward
8.13 – Ben Mee
7.75 – Robbie Brady
7.67 – Matt Lowton
7.50 – Tom Heaton
7.46 – Jack Cork
7.42 – Jeff Hendrick
7.25 – James Tarkowski
6.67 – Johann Berg Gudmundsson

UP THE CLARETS PLAYER OF THE YEAR

10: Sam Vokes
6: Steven Defour
3: Stephen Ward
2: James Tarkowski
1: Ben Mee

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