Leeds 3 Burnley 1: Dallas, Harrison and James stop the rot and hand Bielsea huge win after stunning Cornet free-kick

Leeds 3 Burnley 1: Dallas, Harrison and James stop the rot and hand Bielsea huge win after stunning Cornet free-kick

STUART DALLAS and Dan James struck late on to send Leeds eight points clear of 18th-placed Burnley and the drop zone.

Jack Harrison got the Whites up and running 39 minutes in after taking advantage of James Tarkowski’s clanger.

But the Clarets were right back in it when half-time sub Maxwel Cornet bent a stunning 30-yard free-kick past Illan Meslier.

As Cornet celebrated with his team-mates in front of the Kop at Elland Road, Matt Lowton was struck flush of the face by a full bottle of pop.

The defender was fine to carry on, but Sean Dyche’s side were hit by hammer blow in the 77th minute when Dallas fired home from 20 yards on his 250th appearance for the club.

A short corner between Raphinha and Mateusz Klich was worked to the top of the box, and the Northern Irishman did the rest by stroking home a beauty past Wayne Hennessey.

Sub James then nodded home Joe Gelhardt’s cross at the death to wrap the win up.

Leeds had lost their previous three before this one, so this could prove a defining result in their second season in the top flight.

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Burnley were without a win since October, and with Leicester, Arsenal, Manchester United and Arsenal up next, have a mountain to climb.

Leeds’ last two games were postponed so they arrived here on the back of two weeks off since losing 4-1 to Arsenal.

Defenders Junior Firpo and Diego Llorente were back, but there was no room on the bench for returning striker Patrick Bamford.

Desperately seeking a first win since October, Sean Dyche stuck with the same Burnley 11 from last Thursday’s defeat at Manchester United.

Just before kick-off, Bielsa said the extra rest gave Leeds an advantage.

And they had much the better of a frantic first half to deservedly take a 1-0 break into the lead thanks to Tarkowski’s howler.

First up, Raphinha almost caught Wayne Hennessy out with an audacious chip from just inside Burnley’s half which clipped the top of the bar.

Firpo’s cute flick then had the Clarets keeper scrambling down to his left, and the Brazilian lashed well over just before the break after a great move down the left.

Burnley had one shot on target all half with Leeds indebted to goalkeeper Illan Meslier for standing tall to deny Chris Wood from point-blank range.

But Dyche’s side were all over the place at the back and lucky that Tyler Roberts spooned Luke Ayling’s stellar cross wide from six yards.

Tarkowski then gifted Leeds the opener 39 minutes in, playing the ball straight to Harrison when under no pressure at all.

The winger saw his first effort blocked by Hennessey, but he couldn’t get back up in time as Harrison fired the rebound home for his first of the season.

In need of a spark, Dyche replaced Johann Gudmundsson with Cornet at the break – and the Ivory Coast international’s stunner drew them level eight minutes later.

Lining up a free-kick 30 yards out, Cornet bent a beauty with his wand of a left foot around the weak wall and inside Meslier’s left-hand post.

A rarity for Dyche’s side, this was the first direct free-kick scored for Burnley since Steven Defour against Man United in 2017.

And as has happened all season at Elland Road, missiles were then launched from the Kop, with one full bottle smashing Lowton in the face as the Clarets celebrated.

The full-back required treatment but was fine to carry on.

With the game, and a vital three points there for the taking, it was Leeds and Raphinha who had the best chance to win it.

Sub Dan James skipped away from the Burnley defence and played a wicked low ball across the face of goal.

Not picked up at the far stick, Raphinha – the one player Leeds would want it to fall to – had an open goal to aim at, but the winger completely fluffed his lines and hit it into the side netting.

But Leeds found the winner moments later with Dallas finishing off a well-worked short corner from the right to send Elland Road wild.

Raphinha played it to Mateusz Klich, who teed up the Northern Irishman at the top of the box.

And Dallas made no mistake from 20 yards, opening up his body and caressed a peach off his left peg past the rooted Hennessey.

James then wrapped it up in injury time as he got on the end of fellow replacement Joe Gelhardt’s cross.

Hennessey got a big hand on it but could do nothing as it eventually nestled in the net.


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