Goals from Teemu Pukki and Pierre Lees-Milou condemned Burnley to a catastrophic defeat at Carrow Road on Sunday afternoon.
The defeat, a well deserved one at that, means Sean Dyche’s men now sit four points adrift of 17th-placed Everton – despite beating them in midweek.
Norwich started brightly, with Milot Rashica and Pierre Lees-Melou in particular causing problems for the Burnley defence. The former forced Nick Pope into the first save of the game in the fourth minute, cutting in from the left flank and drilling a shot toward the far corner of the net which was palmed well clear by the England goalkeeper.
The latter then bagged the first goal of the game – and of his Norwich career – in the 10th minute, coolly side-footing beyond Pope after the ball fell kindly to him on the edge of the box.
Despite needing a win, Burnley allowed Norwich to continue to dominate even after the goal. Teemu Pukki came close to doubling the home side’s advantage in the 17th minute, but saw his effort on goal from the right of the penalty area well saved by Pope.
It would take Sean Dyche’s side until the 40th minute to actual look like they were trying to score a goal. Maxwel Cornet began to get more involved down the left flank and the full-backs on both sides began to run forward and try to get on the front foot. Burnley’s best effort on goal of the half would come from Ashley Westwood, who saw a cleanly struck half-volley from the edge of the box well blocked by Grant Hanley in front of his goalkeeper.
Burnley quickly were back to their boring, uninspiring, devoid of talent, selves at the start of the second half, barely being able to string together two passes.
Following a few changes, Dyche’s side were finally able to create a glorious chance to level the score.
A delightful cross from substitute Dwight McNeil bamboozled Krul and the Norwich defence and found Cornet unmarked inside the six yard box. With the goal gaping however, Cornet sliced wide of the post. Honestly, it was probably the worst miss of the season.
Burnley were almost made to rue that missed chance on two occasions around the 80th minute mark. First when an inventive set piece led to a headed chance for Grant Hanley just five yards from goal. The defenders snap header flicked off the crossbar and out for a goal kick. And again when a Rashica burst into the penalty area following a quick counter attack to force Pope into a good save.
Norwich then deservedly got a second in the 85th minute. Pukki (who was the best player on the pitch on the day) was put through on goal by Mathias Normann, and made no mistake from the right of the 18-yard box, as he drilled the ball under Pope and into the net.
Tim Krul (GK) – 5/10 – Really didn’t have too much to do. Burnley were pretty bad.
Sam Byram (RB) – 4/10 – Almost gifted Burnley a goal with some sloppy play.
Grant Hanley (CB) – 6/10 – Fairly solid all afternoon.
Ben Gibson (CB) – 7/10 – Decent outing for the £15m man. Made a few great blocks in the first half.
Dimitris Giannoulis (LB) – 6/10 – Worked up and down his flank pretty well.
Mathias Normann (CM) – 7/10 – Tidy on the ball throughout, and part of a midfield which comfortably bested Burnley’s hapless duo of Westwood and Brownhill. Set up the second with a lovely pass.
Kenny McLean (CM) – 6/10 – Solid performance from the Scot.
Kieran Dowell (RM) – 5/10 – A rare start for the 24-year-old. He tried his best on the right flank, and put in a decent shift.
Pierre Lees-Melou (AM) – 7/10 – Scored his first goal of his Norwich career. It was a nice goal too.
Milot Rashica (LM) – 6/10 – Caused Burnley some problems early on with his quick feet.
Teemu Pukki (ST) – 8/10 – His movement was brilliant, as was his hold up play, and his finishing. Great performance.
Lukas Rupp – N/A.
Brandom Williams – N/A.
Christos Tzolis – N/A.
Nick Pope (GK) – 6/10 – Made a few good saves. Probably the only Burnley player that didn’t embarrass themselves in some way.
Matt Lowton (RB) – 1/10 – Refused to get forward to support the wide players, and also refused to defend too. Useless.
Nathan Collins (CB) – 2/10 – Struggled to track Pukki and was targeted Norwich early on.
James Tarkowski (CB) – 2/10 – Didn’t handle the threat of Pukki well at all.
Charlie Taylor (LB) – 1/10 – Like Lowton, just refused to get forward (or was told not to by Dyche). Played Pukki onside for the second goal.
Aaron Lennon (RM) – 2/10 – Never looked capable of doing anything productive on the right flank.
Ashley Westwood (CM) – 2/10 – Not up to scratch. At all.
Josh Brownhill (CM) – 1/10 – Yeah just terrible. Not much else to say.
Maxwel Cornet (LM) – 2/10 – Probably earned himself the ‘miss of the season’ award today. Congrats?
Wout Weghorst (ST) – 1/10 – He did absolutely nothing.
Jay Rodriguez (ST) – 1/10 – Astonishingly still a Premier League footballer.
Matej Vydra – 2/10 – Not good enough.
Dwight McNeil – 4/10 – Added a bit of energy when he was introduced.
Ashley Barnes – N/A.