Burnley 1 Everton 0
Goals: Jeff Hendrick (£5.4m)
Assists: Ashley Westwood (£5.4m)
Bonus Points: James Tarkowski x3 (£5.0m), Hendrick x3, Nick Pope (£4.6m) x1
A Jeff Hendrick (£5.4m) goal earned Burnley a hard-fought three points as Everton slumped to a fourth straight Premier League defeat.
The Republic of Ireland international volleyed home an Ashley Westwood (£5.4m) corner to underline the Toffees’ inability to defend set-pieces.
That was the sixth time Everton have conceded from set-plays this season, a league-high figure, and once again highlighted manager Marco Silva’s Achilles heel – his time in England has now involved 45 goals allowed from dead-ball situations.
The beleaguered boss was not helped by the dismissal of Seamus Coleman (£5.4m) for two yellow cards; one either side of the break. The right-back will now miss the Gameweek 9 visit of West Ham to Goodison Park.
The first came for a late challenge on Erik Pieters (£4.8m) which left the Clarets defender in need of treatment on his ankle. He never truly recovered and was taken off after 54 minutes, thus denying his 12.8% ownership any vital clean sheet points.
Only goalkeeper Nick Pope (£4.6m and 14.9%) is owned by more Fantasy Premier League (FPL) managers among Burnley’s players, but the combination of this week’s international break and boss Sean Dyche’s post-match assessment suggests Pieters should be okay for Gameweek 9 in a fortnight’s time.
“I am waiting to find out the exact details, but it is a sore one that is for sure. He has tried to carry on but couldn’t quite finish the game, but hopefully it is not too serious. I will find out more in the next 24 hours.” Sean Dyche
Coleman (2.5%) will definitely miss the next fixture through suspension, although it is his fellow full-back Lucas Digne (£6.0m) who remains the bigger concern.
His 22.7% ownership have now endured four straight blanks, having banked consecutive clean sheets at the start of the season and two assists by Gameweek 4.
Digne’s attacking threat has stayed consistent throughout, but the team as a whole have lost their way as an offensive and defensive force, with only two goals scored in their current winless run – and a minimum of two conceded in all but one of their last six matches.
Not that either side were exactly bristling with danger at Turf Moor.
They managed only 20 attempts between them – one fewer than Norwich City had on their way to a 5-1 beating by Aston Villa.
Hendrick’s goal was one of only five shots on target in the whole match, with Gylfi Sigurdsson (£7.6m) and Richarlison (£7.9m) both forcing saves from Pope, while Alex Iwobi (£5.9m) should have done better from close range, only for his tame attempt to be blocked by Matthew Lowton (£4.5m).
It was no surprise, then, that members of Burnley’s backline brought in most of the bonus points, with Pope earning one and James Tarkowski (£5.0m) sharing the maximum award with match-winner Hendrick.
The centre-half topped the clearances, blocks and interceptions chart (CBI) with 11 and won six of eight aerial duels.
That helped the Clarets to a second clean sheet in three outings, and three out of four home matches, ahead of a schedule that suggests more of the same in the medium term.
Burnley might be hard pushed to keep out both Leicester City and Chelsea after the international break, but the four games that follow – away at Sheffield United and Watford and home to West Ham and Crystal Palace – look much more promising.
And if Pieters’ injury proves to be something more serious, his replacement against Everton, Charlie Taylor (£4.2m), offers a low-cost way into an efficient defensive unit.
Such efficiency is less pronounced up front, however,
Midfielder Johann Berg Gudmundsson (£5.9m) led the team with three attempts on Saturday – a total that strike partners Ashley Barnes (£6.5m) and Chris Wood (£6.2m) could only muster between them.
Barnes, in particular, has gone completely off the boil since scoring four times in the first three matches of the season.
His ownership peaked at 760,000+ managers in Gameweek 5 as a result, but that’s now down to less than half a million, or 6.9%, and it’s easy to see why when you take a look at his output during his five-match drought.
He has led the way for attempts, with ten, over that period, but only one of those was on target. During the same spell, Wood (1.3%) has managed three goals from nine shots, five of which were on target.
We recently did some research into Burnley’s two main strikers to see which had the better Fantasy potential, CLICK HERE for the results.
Barnes and Pieters now find themselves in the top 30 for sales ahead of Gameweek 9, with Digne in the top ten.
The temptation to hold on to Everton assets is still just about there, however.
The Toffees have a solid run of fixtures over the next six Gameweeks, with their trickiest task probably a visit from Spurs – a club as deep in the mire as they are at the moment.
Perhaps the key factor in deciding whether to retain Everton players will be the future of their manager.
The international break could be the ideal time for Silva to reset and redirect his players. It could also be a nice long stretch for the board to fire him and find a replacement.
Silva himself was in no doubt as to the importance of Gameweek 9’s visit from West Ham.
“The players know what we are doing but we need results. At this club, we had worse moments than this and we reacted well. We had a fantastic period and showed what we can do. I don’t have doubts about doing that again. We have to stick together to change things and the next one is a must-win game.” – Marco Silva
Unfortunately for him, the Hammers are proving no pushovers on the road this season – they’re unbeaten across their four away days to date.
Burnley XI (4-4-2): Pope; Pieters (C Taylor 55′), Mee, Tarkowski, Lowton; McNeil, Westwood, Hendrick, Gudmundsson (Lennon 84′); A Barnes (Rodriguez 73′), Wood.
Everton XI (4-2-3-1): Pickford; Digne, Mina, Keane, Coleman; Delph, Schneiderlin (A Gomes 84′); Iwobi, Sigurdsson (Sidibé 59′), Richarlison; Calvert-Lewin (Kean 74′).
Lessons learned from Gameweek 8
- Brighton 3-0 Tottenham Hotspur
- Burnley 1-0 Everton
- Liverpool 2-1 Leicester City
- Norwich City 1-5 Aston Villa
- Watford 0-0 Sheffield United
- West Ham United 1-2 Crystal Palace
- Arsenal 1-0 Bournemouth
- Manchester City 0-2 Wolves
- Southampton 1-4 Chelsea
- Newcastle United 1-0 Manchester United
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