Premier League
Burnley1Chelsea2

Burnley 1-2 Chelsea

Victor Moses
Victor Moses scored his fourth goal of the season

Chelsea maintained their push for a top-four finish in the Premier League with a 2-1 victory at European hopefuls Burnley.

Kevin Long's own goal set Antonio Conte's men on their way in the first half, but Ashley Barnes deflected Johann Berg Gudmundsson's wayward shot to equalise for Burnley at Turf Moor.

Victor Moses' right-footed shot into the bottom corner proved decisive and ensured the Blues, who trailed fourth-placed Tottenham by 10 points last week, narrowed the gap to five points.

Chelsea have the opportunity to increase the pressure on their London rivals when they travel to Swansea on 28 April.

Mauricio Pochettino's team face Manchester United in the FA Cup semi-finals on Sunday and do not play in the league again until they meet Watford on 30 April.

Sean Dyche's Burnley remain seventh and on course for the Europa League with an eight-point advantage over Leicester City in eighth.

With one eye on the semi-final, Chelsea's strength in depth afforded Conte the luxury of making six changes to his starting XI without it impairing their performance.

They were accomplished going forward despite the absence of Cesc Fabregas and Willian, while Eden Hazard appeared only as a second-half substitute.

Chelsea fielded a two-man attack - in the form of Alvaro Morata and Olivier Giroud - for the first time in seven years.

While Chelsea's finishing was profligate at times - particularly when Morata missed a one-on-one with Burnley goalkeeper Nick Pope after N'Golo Kante sent him clear - they were exemplary in their defensive work, restricting an obdurate Burnley to only two shots on target.

Media playback is not supported on this device

Burnley 1-2 Chelsea: Playing two strikers is a really good option - Antonio Conte

'Burnley remain on European path'

While defeat ended Burnley's run of five consecutive victories, it did nothing to dampen their hopes of European football next term.

It has been a season of spiralling ambitions in east Lancashire since Dyche's side beat Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on the opening day.

However, not even the most optimistic Clarets fan could have anticipated being stationed on the brink of European football - for the first time since taking part in the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup in 1966-67 - with four games remaining.

Barring an unthinkable collapse, a place in the Europa League second qualifying round between 26 July and 2 August appears a probable destination. The seventh-placed Premier League team is set to qualify for the Europa League unless Southampton win the FA Cup.

Double trouble for Chelsea

Touchmap showing touches of Burnley and Chelsea forwards
Chelsea's Olivier Giroud and Alvaro Morata had twice as many touches in the opposition penalty area (right) as Burnley's Ashley Barnes and Chris Wood

Chelsea last deployed a conventional front two in a Premier League fixture on 27 August 2011, when Fernando Torres and Didier Drogba were paired together in a 3-1 victory over Norwich.

On this evidence, though, it may become a more common theme, with Conte delighted by the showing of Morata and Giroud.

"They showed a great link and a great combination and at the same time they worked very hard for the team," he said.

As Chelsea dominated midfield, the Spain-France forward axis worked in tandem all evening, running off the ball and providing outlets in front of and behind the Burnley defence.

With Morata and Giroud performing like a well-established partnership, it made for a troubling evening for Clarets centre-backs James Tarkowski and Long and goalkeeper Pope, whose mistake under pressure led to the opening goal.

In contrast, the Burnley front two of Barnes and Chris Wood found themselves isolated and their involvement rather more sporadic.

Man of the match - Victor Moses (Chelsea)

Victor Moses
Victor Moses' elusive running was evident throughout. His cross led to Chelsea's opening goal and he scored the winner in the second half.

'It is not simple to play Burnley' - what they said

Chelsea manager Antonio Conte: "We played a good game against a difficult team because it is not simple to play against Burnley. We played the game very well and the two strikers worked very well.

"They played a fantastic game with and without the ball. The whole team played an intensive game. We deserved to win."

Burnley manager Sean Dyche: "I was really pleased. Against the top sides it is a different kind of feel. Seen the money they have spent?

"We have moved forward a long way but there is still a gap between us and the top six. They are bringing Eden Hazard on as a sub. You can't forget you are playing against the top end of the market."

Media playback is not supported on this device

Burnley 1-2 Chelsea: The top six are a different animal - Sean Dyche

Conte's 100th game - the stats

  • Chelsea recorded back-to-back league victories for the first time in 2018
  • Since beating Chelsea in their first match of the season, Burnley have collected only four points from 10 Premier League matches against the 'big six' sides (P10 W0 D4 L6)
  • This was Antonio Conte's 100th match in charge of Chelsea in all competitions - only Jose Mourinho (72) has won more of his first 100 games in charge of the Blues than Conte (65)
  • Ashley Barnes has scored five goals in his past seven league appearances
  • Barnes' past seven league goals have all been assisted by different players (Arfield, Long, Hendrick, Lowton, Wood, Lennon and Gudmundsson)
  • Two of Chelsea's past eight goals in the league have been own goals (Kevin Long on Thursday and Martin Kelly for Crystal Palace) - their previous two came across a total of 167 goals
  • This was the first Premier League match to feature two Italians in a Chelsea team (Emerson and Davide Zappacosta) since May 2003 against Liverpool (Carlo Cudicini and Gianfranco Zola)
  • This was the 500th game on a Thursday in English top-flight history

What's next?

Burnley travel to Stoke on Sunday 22 April (13:30 BST), while Chelsea head to Wembley to face Southampton on the same day (15:00 BST) in the FA Cup semi-finals.

Line-ups

Burnley

  • 29Pope
  • 2Lowton
  • 28Long
  • 5TarkowskiBooked at 28mins
  • 23Ward
  • 25LennonSubstituted forWellsat 87'minutes
  • 4Cork
  • 18Westwood
  • 17Berg Gudmundsson
  • 10Barnes
  • 11WoodSubstituted forVokesat 72'minutes

Substitutes

  • 1Heaton
  • 3Taylor
  • 8Marney
  • 9Vokes
  • 13Hendrick
  • 21Wells
  • 26Bardsley

Chelsea

  • 13Courtois
  • 28Azpilicueta
  • 24Cahill
  • 2Rüdiger
  • 15Moses
  • 11Pedro
  • 7Kanté
  • 14Bakayoko
  • 33EmersonSubstituted forZappacostaat 84'minutes
  • 9MorataSubstituted forE Hazardat 71'minutes
  • 18Giroud

Substitutes

  • 1Caballero
  • 4Fàbregas
  • 8Barkley
  • 10E Hazard
  • 21Zappacosta
  • 22Willian
  • 27Christensen
Referee:
Robert Madley
Attendance:
21,264

Match Stats

Home TeamBurnleyAway TeamChelsea
Possession
Home39%
Away61%
Shots
Home5
Away16
Shots on Target
Home2
Away5
Corners
Home3
Away2
Fouls
Home9
Away11

Live Text

Match ends, Burnley 1, Chelsea 2.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Burnley 1, Chelsea 2.

Tiemoué Bakayoko (Chelsea) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Matthew Lowton (Burnley).

N'Golo Kanté (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Ashley Barnes (Burnley).

Hand ball by Olivier Giroud (Chelsea).

Olivier Giroud (Chelsea) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Kevin Long (Burnley).

Attempt blocked. Eden Hazard (Chelsea) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Olivier Giroud with a headed pass.

Foul by Olivier Giroud (Chelsea).

Johann Berg Gudmundsson (Burnley) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Burnley. Nahki Wells replaces Aaron Lennon.

Attempt missed. Davide Zappacosta (Chelsea) header from the centre of the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Victor Moses with a cross.

Attempt blocked. Tiemoué Bakayoko (Chelsea) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Eden Hazard.

Substitution

Substitution, Chelsea. Davide Zappacosta replaces Emerson.

Eden Hazard (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Kevin Long (Burnley).

Attempt blocked. Pedro (Chelsea) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Eden Hazard.

Corner, Chelsea. Conceded by James Tarkowski.

Attempt blocked. Olivier Giroud (Chelsea) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Eden Hazard.

Emerson (Chelsea) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Matthew Lowton (Burnley).

Tiemoué Bakayoko (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Kevin Long (Burnley).

Attempt missed. Jack Cork (Burnley) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Kevin Long following a set piece situation.

Foul by Tiemoué Bakayoko (Chelsea).

Matthew Lowton (Burnley) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt saved. Sam Vokes (Burnley) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Johann Berg Gudmundsson with a cross.

Substitution

Substitution, Burnley. Sam Vokes replaces Chris Wood.

Corner, Burnley. Conceded by César Azpilicueta.

Substitution

Substitution, Chelsea. Eden Hazard replaces Álvaro Morata.

Goal!

Goal! Burnley 1, Chelsea 2. Victor Moses (Chelsea) right footed shot from the right side of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Emerson with a cross.

Attempt saved. Emerson (Chelsea) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Tiemoué Bakayoko.

Emerson (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Ashley Barnes (Burnley).

Goal!

Goal! Burnley 1, Chelsea 1. Ashley Barnes (Burnley) left footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Johann Berg Gudmundsson.

Attempt blocked. Johann Berg Gudmundsson (Burnley) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Ashley Westwood.

Attempt saved. Victor Moses (Chelsea) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Pedro.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Man City33283293256887
2Man Utd34235665263974
3Liverpool342010478354370
4Tottenham34208666313568
5Chelsea34196959342563
6Arsenal331661162451754
7Burnley341410103431352
8Leicester341111124947244
9Everton34119143954-1542
10Newcastle33118143542-741
11Bournemouth35911154158-1738
12Watford34107174260-1837
13Brighton34812143247-1536
14West Ham33811144159-1835
15Huddersfield3498172754-2735
16Crystal Palace34810163654-1834
17Swansea3389162746-1933
18Southampton34514153353-2029
19Stoke34610183164-3328
20West Brom34412182752-2524
View full Premier League table

Top Stories