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Burnley picked up another three points with a 2-0 win at Norwich this evening against a home side who were reduced to nine men with two red cards in the closing stages of the first half.

Some managers would complain at the decisions but Norwich boss Daniel Farke said: “We are sitting in position twenty in this league. We finished the last home game with eight outfield players. I’m far from accusing anyone else.

“In these moments, we have to look in the mirror and have to say these two red cards were naïve, inexperienced, unprofessional, stupid – to be honest, all the words fit. One thing is for sure, these two red cards are not acceptable at this level. To finish a game with just eight lads, you can have the best team in the world and it wouldn’t be possible to win any points at this level.

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“We started the game exactly how we wanted. It was important today to make out of this game our game. We can’t compete with the physical and aerial threat of Burnley and for that, it was important to bring the ball into their half and dominate the ball and game. That’s exactly what we did in the first 25 minutes. We created good chance with Ben Godfrey and Alex Tettey, Nick Pope was there with some good saves.

“Burnley reacted in a way how a pretty experienced and smart Premier League side should react. They tried to break our rhythm and tried to provoke us and make things hectic. They tried to discuss each and every duel and tried to provoke some situations to distract us and take our focus away from this game. To be honest, with open eyes we walked into this trap with two red cards which, of course, killed our game.”

He added: “There was a good reaction in the second half because, with eight outfield players, it was important to stay unbelievably solid and stay in the game for as long as possible and then in the last few minutes, get a lucky punch.

“I have just compliments for the players who were on the pitch in the second half because they defended everything and did exactly what we wanted. We had this one chance with Onel Hernández but Nick Pope was there with another great save. Sadly one of the best three players on the pitch, Ben Godfrey, he was fantastic today, he was there with an unlucky own goal. 0-2 down with just eight outfield players on the pitch, the game is then done.”

Farke brought on Christoph Zimmermann at half time for his first appearance since the restart and he was probably their best player. The manager said: “It was a big risk. Timm Klose was not able to go further on, he had problems with his hamstring. We were thinking pretty carefully about this but we expected that many crosses would come in and we would need Christoph’s ability to be there.

“He was great and that’s one of the positives we can take out of this game. His performance was great and he showed exactly what we’ve missed.

“For next week it will be tricky. We have to wait what will happen with Timm Klose and Alex Tettey, he had a swollen knee after the game. He felt some pain. We also have two players unavailable because of the two red cards. It will be a tricky team selection next week, but right now, I’m more annoyed and disappointed with this outcome in our last home game.”

There was no disappointment for Sean Dyche who saw his side complete the double over Norwich. After the game, he said: “It was a very strange evening, bizarre, even. I’ve only had that once before against nine men at Chelsea, but they bombarded us from everywhere.

“Today was interesting because it’s the first time I’ve seen a team go two banks of four and no striker. It felt like a sort of training game. I know they have had their challenges this season and there was no crowd, so maybe the game was always going to feel strange.

“It’s difficult to break that down and that made it awkward to get a foothold and control the game in terms of goals and chances. We had little moments, but other than Chris’s amazing chance, early in the second half, we huffed and puffed a bit.

“I’m probably being a bit critical though, because we’ve just got another win and another clean sheet and our run since Christmas has been phenomenal and even better since lockdown. So, I’m nitpicking really about a team of mine that has just won another Premier League game.”

The manager has had a lot to deal with recently in terms of team selection because of player unavailability and added: “I’m asking a lot from these players, but when you look at the results we’ve got I can’t be anything other than proud by the sheer mentality to go hard and rack up as many wins as possible.

“This spell has been absolutely fantastic. We’ve come down here, kept a clean sheet, scored two goals, so there’s a lot to be pleased about. We’ve equalled our best ever Premier League points tally and that’s a strong marker for a club like Burnley.

“I’m super pleased with the players. They have stayed calm and we’ve seen through a lot of challenges this season, on and off the pitch, but they have stayed steadfast to the cause to deliver and achieve a record number of wins.

“We’d all have taken this at the start of the season. These are very strong times for this football club and against some real challenges, so we should be really pleased. Now, we’ve one game left and the players want to take on that challenge. We’ll give the players a few days off now and hopefully we’ll be full of energy to take on the last game and see where that takes us.”

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