It’s back to the comforts of home for Rovers this evening after the terrific win over Sheffield Wednesday at Hillsborough at the weekend.
The record between the two sides is relatively even with Rovers definitely in the ascendency when it comes to games played in South Yorkshire, so a repeat of the 2008 meeting between the sides would be more than welcome.
Rovers went into the game on the back of a terrific 4-2 away win at Nottingham Forest to give them a tremendous boost ahead of the playoff chasing Claret’s visit to the Keepmoat. The threat they posed was highlighted within five minutes of kickoff.
Former Manchester United wideman Chris Eagles was trying to showcase his talents but found Rovers’ defence in defiant mood, blocking his early goalbound effort.
Rovers returned fire as Martin Woods tested Brian Jensen, in the Burnley goal, and the man they called ‘the beast’ was just able to cling onto the ball with Paul Heffernan lurking in the box.
It was a pulsating encounter with Rovers really keen to take advantage of the terrific home support spurring them on, Heffernan raced through after Matt Mills played a long ball forward but the Irishman couldn’t beat Jensen who deflected the ball for a corner. The Burnley custodian was at it again within ten minutes expertly denying James Coppinger’s fizzing shot from distance as Rovers continued to press.
Robbie Blake fired a warning shot at the other end as he struck the cross bar with a free kick but just as the Clarets had weathered the storm their skipper, Clarke Carlisle, was to make a horrific error presenting Coppinger with a gift of a chance and he duly accepted.
Burnley had barely dusted themselves down after going behind before Richie Wellens burst into the box and he was unceremoniously brought down by Steven Caldwell, who was duly dismissed. Brian Stock swept home the resulting spot kick at the second attempt after Trevor Kettle ordered a retake due to players encroaching into the penalty area.
It was always going to be an uphill task for the visitors after the break but the ten men made a real fist of it and arguably deserved to get a goal for their endeavour. John Spicer was close to really killing the Clarets off however, as the midfielder got a shot away from the edge of the box but Jensen was there diving low to save.
But with 17 minutes of the second half gone, the visitors did get themselves back into the game as Wade Elliott combined with Martin Paterson and the former Scunthorpe United striker did the rest. It proved to be scant consolation for Burnley who couldn’t get the better of Rovers’ defence for the second time and the home side took a vital three points and their second victory in as many games.