Debutant scores crucial equaliser as Burnley hold EPL leaders Chelsea 1-1
Burnley's Robbie Brady (left) celebrates with teammates after scoring the equaliser against Chelsea during their English Premier League match in Burnley yesterday. Pic/AFP
Burnley: Robbie Brady's stunning debut goal checked Chelsea's Premier League title charge as Burnley maintained their impressive home form in a 1-1 draw at Turf Moor.
Republic of Ireland international Brady, a £10million deadline-day signing from Norwich, curled a home a superb 20-yard free-kick to cancel out Pedro's early opener for Chelsea.
Chelsea had won 16 of their previous 18 league games heading into the fixture, while Sean Dyche's Clarets were chasing a sixth straight home league win and their eighth in all competitions. Burnley, yet to win on the road in the league this season, have steered clear of relegation trouble following promotion due to their formidable home form.
Although Chelsea finished the game stronger, Antonio Conte's side did not deserve to become only the fourth side to triumph at Turf Moor this season and the first since Manchester City in November. Eden Hazard forced Tom Heaton to save low down to his right in the opening exchanges and it came as no surprise when Chelsea, unchanged from last week's home win against Arsenal, opened the scoring in the seventh minute.
Victor Moses drifted in from the right and threaded a pin-point pass down the middle for Pedro to run into the penalty area unopposed and slide the ball into Heaton's bottom right-hand corner.Burnley, for whom another deadline-day signing, Ashley Westwood, also made his full debut, responded through Ashley Barnes, but the striker was off balance and his shot barely troubled Thibaut Cortois.