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Burnley denied victory by Claret and Blue Villans

The final day of the Premier League (PL) season will see Burnley and Leeds United – who are now level on points following the ‘Clarets’ 1-1 draw with Aston Villa – battle it out to avoid dropping out of the top-flight.

Despite succumbing to back-to-back defeats after winning three on the bounce, Burnley’s destiny was still in their own hands in the tussle for PL survival. In what was both side’s penultimate match of the season, Villa settled into the game from the start, as the visitors struggled to get a hold of the ball. John McGinn tested Nick Pope with a threatening left-footed curling effort in the 16th minute, but the England international was on hand to successfully tip the effort wide of the post.

The hosts continued to have the edge, though were unable to find an ounce of luck in the final third, as Pope magnificently denied McGinn once more to keep the visitors in the game. In a remarkable turn of events, the ‘Clarets’ were awarded a penalty after Emiliano Buendía brought down Maxwel Cornet in the area. Ashley Barnes stepped up and made no mistake to score his first PL goal of the season, sending Emiliano Martínez the wrong way to provide Burnley with an unexpected HT lead.

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In response to being a goal down, Buendía repaired the damage minutes into the second half by volleying in McGinn’s defence-splitting pass to pull Villa level, as the ball squirmed under Pope following a lapse of concentration in the Burnley backline. The ‘Clarets’ found themselves up against it following the equaliser, as Villa further stamped their authority on the fixture, as Steven Gerrard’s outfit searched for a final home win of the season.

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After weathering the storm and having a VAR check turned down following appeals for a handball inside the area, the away side rallied in an attempt to gain an advantage on the final day. Substitute Wout Weghorst thought he’d nicked a last-gasp winner, but the Dutch striker was heroically blocked by Tyrone Mings, before Matt Lowton was sent-off in stoppage time for a reckless challenge to end the game on a sour note against his former club.

Burnley now face Newcastle United on Sunday, knowing their destiny is in their own hands by having the better goal difference.

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