Bournemouth 2-1 Burnley: Philip Billing scores from halfway line to take home all three points for the hosts as Vincent Kompany’s side frustrated by VAR controversy which ruled out Jay Rodriguez’s late equaliser
- Philip Billing scored his first goal of the 2023-24 campaign to secure the win
- Bournemouth trailed their visitors within ten minutes, though soon equalised
- Antoine Semenyo levelled the scoring for the hosts to 1-1 within 22 minutes
It was Philip Billing to the rescue at the Vitality Stadium as the Bournemouth midfielder’s sensational 35-yard lob damned Burnley to an eighth defeat of the season and handed the Cherries their first Premier League victory in a deserved 2-1 win, but a record-breaking five-minute VAR check spoiled what should have been a high-octane end to the game.
Make no mistake both of these teams are strong candidates for relegation this season and for good reason.
Bournemouth had failed to win any of their nine league matches preceding Saturday’s matchup, while any optimism from Burnley’s dominant Championship promotion last season had quickly drained away.
But at least there was a fight between two dogged teams determined to avoid the drop on the rain-battered south coast.
Torrid form and the occasional thrashing meant the weekend clash between two relegation candidates could be viewed as a last roll of the dice for both Andoni Iraola and Vincent Kompany who are two of the favourites to be the first managerial sackings in the English top-flight.
Charlie Taylor celebrates scoring their first goal, putting the visitors ahead in just 11 minutes
Andoni Iraola celebrated at full-time with Philip Billing after he secured all three points
Burnley’s Jay Rodriguez and teammates applaud the fans after the match
Bournemouth’s Philip Billing (not pictured) scores their side’s second goal of the game during Premier League match at the Vitality Stadium, lobbing keeper James Trafford from distance
Bournemouth players heralded the call and produced when it mattered most as American owner Bill Foley made a rare trip to watch his side. Bournemouth wasted chances to take the lead inside the opening 10 minutes with lamentable decision-making in the final third twice costing them.
Philip Billing stumbled through Burnley’s midfield and lacked power with his eventual through ball. The next mistake came from Antoine Semeyo after he did all the hard work to turn Ameen Al-Dakhil but similarly made the wrong decision with his final pass.
Burnley’s most likely scoring route was from a set-piece as two corners failed to sprout concern amongst Bournemouth’s ranks before a third left Cherries goalkeeper Andrei Radu with no chance of keeping a clean-sheet on his Premier League debut.
Charlie Taylor composed himself and struck a wicked shot from the edge of the box to put the visitors ahead with his first goal for the club. The hosts were at risk of allowing themselves to drift out of the game, they perhaps would have, but for Semenyo’s spark that stunned Burnley’s defence.
There was a neglection of the warning signs the Bournemouth winger had threatened with when he raced to the byline and smashed a cross to the back-post that should have been finished by Marcus Tavernier but was instead scooped over the bar.
He was justifiably selfish with his next chance when he dispossessed Taylor and dragged a pinpoint shot into the bottom corner to level the game.
The visitors wanted a foul on Taylor to be given, fortunately VAR made the correct decision in not doing so. Just like that there was renewed confidence in everything Bournemouth were doing, epitomised by one moment from Max Aarons when the full-back absorbed pressure in his own half and dribbled past three Burnley players before Josh Cullen brought him down and was shown a yellow card.
Bournemouth were in the ascendancy with five corners in quick succession late in the half testing James Trafford but each attempt failed to get the better of the Burnley keeper.
Bournemouth’s Philip Billing displays a message on his shirt that reads ‘We Are The World. We Are The Children’, though was presented with a yellow card soon after celebrating
Vincent Kompany has only earned four points from his side’s first ten matches in the top flight
A controversial VAR decision ruled out Rodriguez’s late equaliser as offside
Jay Rodriguez and Chris Mepham console at full-time after a tightly contested match
Chris Mepham was the unlikely dangerman in the box when he headed straight at the goalkeeper. However, Trafford didn’t look as comfortable at the end of the half when he appeared to fall out of the box with the ball in hand.
Cherries players demanded a penalty and at first reflection there was good reason for wanting one as well, but play continued. Bournemouth continued to impress at the start of the second half with Tavernier twice stinging Trafford’s palms.
Burnley couldn’t get out first gear and looked stuck for ideas as Kompany stalked his technical area, hands in pockets and fuming when errors were made.
Jay Rodriguez came on to provide an experienced attacking threat but Bournemouth looked comfortable defending for large periods and that should be a concern for Burnley supporters against a team that have limped from defeat-to-defeat so far this season.
Bournemouth secured their first win of the campaign to climb out of the relegation zone
Players waited five minutes for a VAR decision to be made, much to the frustration of fans
MATCH FACTS AND PLAYER RATINGS:
Bournemouth: (4-1-4-1) Radu (6), Aarons (7) (Smith 85′), Zabarnyi (6), Mepham (7), Kelly (C) (6), Billing (7) (Rothwell 81′), Scott (6), Tavernier (6) (Kerkez 81′), Christie (6), Semenyo (7) (Ouattara 69′), Solanke (5)
Unused subs: Travers, Brooks, Sinisterra, Kluivert, Moore
Scorers: Semenyo 22′, Billing 76′
Booked: Billing, Ouattara
Manager: Andoni Iraola (7)
Burnley: (4-2-3-1) Trafford (5), Taylor (6), O’Shea (6), Al-Dakhil (5), Vitinho (6), Guomundsson (6) (Redmond 81′), Cullen (5) (Berge 6 60′), Brownhill (5), Koleosho (5), Amdouni (5) (Rodriguez 6 45′), Zaroury 6 (Bruun Larsen 6 68′)
Unused subs: Muric, Cork, Tresor, Delcroix, Odobert
Scorers: Taylor 11′
Booked: Cullen, Taylor, Al-Dakhil
Manager: Vincent Kompany (5)
Referee: Sam Barrott (6)
The Cherries continued to build with a barrage of attacks but the lack of quality in those chances let Burnley off the hook. If the corner count won matches then Bournemouth would have clinched three points easily, the problem for Iraola’s players was nobody was capable of producing the killer ball to kill off Burnley.
Eventually it was a piece of magic from Billing that was the difference as the Cherries midfielder spotted Trafford off his line and dinked an opportunistic lob towards goal that drifted as if in slow motion over the goalkeeper and into the net.
Surely the winner? Rodriguez thought he had spoiled the party after racing through and scoring late in regulation time.
The offside flag went up and what followed was a record-breaking VAR check that was an embarrassment to the beautiful game.
It took VAR officials David Coote and Marc Perry five minutes in Stockley Park to decide the goal was offside. The decision looked simple when the lines were drawn, then they were taken away, and then we were shown images of the pair frustratingly pointing at their monitors and a restless crowd understandably wanted answers.
Eventually it was ruled offside and Bournemouth managed to hang on to seal a crucial victory that pulls them out of the relegation zone.
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