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Having gone 1-0 up early in the game, hopes were raised that it might be a different story this time against Chelsea, but it was not to be and they responded with four goals to beat us 4-1.

It’s the fourth time in five visits to the Turf that they’ve scored four times, the one exception coming in the 2020/21 behind closed doors season when they were only able to beat us 3-0. Yesterday’s result leaves us with just one point against them in nine Premier League home games in which we’ve conceded.

Mid-October at the Turf, just three weeks before the clocks go back. That usually means it’s time to get the winter coats out as the temperature drops. Not on your life yesterday, it was down to shirts with the thermometer edging close to twenty degrees and the only concern from my vantage point in the Longside upper was shielding my eyes from the sun. We need to make the most of it; there are only three more days left before it starts to go very autumnal.

In my match preview I pointed out that, although it is difficult to predict the line-up, it’s not that Vincent Kompany ever makes too many changes and this season there have never been more than two from one league game to another. So yesterday he made four. Hannes Delcroix came in for the injured Jordan Beyer but the other three changes were not forced; all of Connor Roberts, Luca Koleosho and Zeki Amdouni were benched with Vitinho, Mike Trésor and Wilson Odobert coming in, the latter two for their first Premier League starts.

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Chelsea had the first two opportunities of the game. Cole Palmer fired an effort well off target before Raheem Sterling came very close with a shot that I initially thought had gone in. It went narrowly wide but did lead to the game’s opening goal.

Directly from the goal kick, we got the ball out to the right where Trésor and Vitinho linked up with Vitinho playing the ball inside for Lyle Foster. The striker did so, so well. He moved inside before slipping the ball to Odobert on the left hand side of goal. Odobert took one touch before finishing well with a left foot shot back across Robert Sánchez into the corner.

What a start; in front against Chelsea in a home game for the first time since Scott Arfield excited us in our opening game of the 2014/15 season. On that occasion it didn’t take Chelsea long to respond; this time, at least, it did take longer.

It gave us a real lift and for a while we looked the better of the two sides. Trésor almost got onto an Odobert cross and had that gone in then we might have been heading for a comfortable win. However, Chelsea started to dominate the ball and we were now the team retreating although they weren’t offering too much in terms of chances.

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Who knows what might have happened had we been able to take that lead into half time, but three minutes before the break we conceded an equaliser. Sterling, who was the game’s outstanding player, got down the left and crossed the ball. Ameen Al-Dakhil was caught out by it and the ball looped into the net off his hip.

It was 1-1 at the break but Chelsea still weren’t happy. Not for the first time at Burnley, we saw Mauricio Pochettino ranting at the officials alongside Thiago Silva. Why? Apparently he was, according to the television commentary, upset with a yellow card. He got one himself for his troubles.

There was no Al-Dakhil for the start of the second half with Dara O’Shea coming on as a substitute. I can only assume that Al-Dakhil had picked up an injury to sideline him alongside Hjalmar Ekdal and Beyer.

If you want to make a bad start to the second half, try giving away a penalty. We did just that when Vitinho brought down Sterling. Referee Stuart Attwell pointed to the spot immediately but we had the longest of waits before VAR official Darren Bond confirmed that the foul was inside the box and a penalty. Mates at Manchester City, but taker got one over on goalkeeper with Cole Palmer sending James Trafford the wrong way.

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I doubt there were too many Burnley fans confident of a win now and they were right not to be although a terrific Odobert left foot shot forced Sánchez into a save.

Just past the hour we made a triple substitution. It didn’t work at all; I felt we went worse with the changes and four minutes after all of Roberts, Koleosho and Aaron Ramsey came on we conceded again.

Roberts played a ball inside for Ramsey but, as at Newcastle, he failed to deal with it and that allowed Moisés Caicedo to nick the ball from him and then get past Sander Berge before playing a pass to Conor Gallagher. He pushed the ball forward for Sterling who made no mistake with a shot into the far corner. This time the VAR wait was ridiculously long and this after Attwell had actually allowed us to restart the game.

Ahead of this game, Sterling was one of fifteen players to have scored Premier League goals against us for two different clubs, a list that includes former Clarets Charlie Austin, Danny Ings and Junior Stanislas. With this goal he became the first to achieve that with three different clubs and all of those three goals have come on the Turf, the others for Liverpool (2014/15) and Manchester City (2020/21).

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Once behind like this, you start to think the worst and worse was to come when they scored a fourth. Sterling was again involved down the left and this time his cross found Palmer beyond the far post. Palmer played it in for Nicolas Jackson who twisted turned, dumping O’Shea onto the ground before hitting home.

Thankfully that was that. There were no further goals although we did get one opportunity with a free kick on the edge of their box. Before we could take it, on came Jacob Bruun Larsen. He took the free kick but it hit the wall.

The game was gone for Burnley. In our previous home game we were beaten by what I thought was the worst Manchester United team I’d seen in the Premier League. Chelsea were better than United, without doubt, but has a worse Chelsea side played at Turf Moor in the Premier League era? I think not. There’s a reason why they kicked off in the bottom half of the table and why, despite this result, they remain so.

There have to be concerns given our start. We continue to score at around one goal per game but we’ve conceded twenty goals in the first eight games. That’s four more than in any other Premier League season at this stage (sixteen in 2009/10). If we don’t start tightening up defensively then we are going to be in serious trouble down at the bottom of the league.

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I know we have played so many big clubs, yes we have, but they haven’t all had to play well to beat us. I was concerned a week ago at how easy Newcastle had it against us, but this performance and result against a very average Chelsea team has surely set alarm bells ringing.

The teams were;

Burnley: James Trafford, Vitinho (Connor Roberts 61), Ameen Al-Dakhil (Dara O’Shea ht), Hannes Delcroix, Charlie Taylor, Josh Cullen (Aaron Ramsey 61), Sander Berge, Mike Trésor (Luca Koleosho 61), Josh Brownhill, Wilson Odobert (Jacob Bruun Larsen 79), Lyle Foster. Subs not used: Arijanet Muric, Jack Cork, Zeki Amdouni, Jay Rodriguez.
Yellow Cards: Josh Cullen, Wilson Odobert.

Chelsea: Robert Sánchez, Marc Cucurella, Axel Disasi, Thiago Silva, Levi Colwill, Conor Gallagher, Moisés Caicedo, Enzo Fernández, Cole Palmer (Ian Maatsen 86), Armando Broja (Nicolas Jackson ht), Raheem Sterling (Mykhailo Mudryk 83). Subs not used: Đjorđe Petrović, Noni Madueke, Lesley Ugochukwu, Carney Chukwuemeka, Alfie Gilchrist, Alex Matos.
Yellow Cards: Marc Cucurella, Enzo Fernández, Thiago Silva, Moisés Caicedo.

Referee: Stuart Attwell (Nuneaton).

Attendance: 21,654.

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