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Lynette Rowe
August 13, 2017

Burnley piled on the pressure on the hosts and had Coach Antonio Conte's heart in his mouth when Sam Vokes headed in the 19th minute. The jeers were likely directed at the match officials, with Chelsea having a player sent off in both halves. Fabregas was booked for sarcastically applauding Pawson's decision to give a free-kick against him and much worse was to follow.

Chelsea will up their offer for the Foxes midfielder to £25 million in order to reunite the England worldwide with N'Golo Kante, with whom he won the Premier League title in 2016 at the King Power Stadium.

The visitors then managed to double their lead in the 39th minute as Stephen Ward rifled the ball into the top corner from inside the box. Ignoring the obvious opportunity to launch a cross into the Chelsea area, the visitors played a free-kick short.

It was a scruffy shot that beat Thibaut Courtois and the Chelsea keeper had every right to feel aggrieved with Luiz, who turned his back on Vokes as the ball arrived. While that was speculative, Burnley were being clinical.

With just five minutes to the break, Conte looked desperate to get his players in for a regroup but the reigning champions dropped further behind as Burnley grabbed a brilliant second in the 40th minute.

While there will be plenty of deflated Chelsea fans around the world, there was one major positive to be taken from Saturday.

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The defeat, after a troubled summer, was a worrying echo of the manner in which Jose Mourinho's champions collapsed two seasons ago, costing the "Special One" his job - and on Saturday night bookmakers installed Conte as the favourite to be the first Premier League manager to leave his club this season. Not least because Willian stood up as the only player with any heart for the first hour.

"It was a pity because our fight in the second half was very good", said Chelsea manager Antonio Conte.

Chelsea's task was made even tougher in the 80th minute when Cesc Fabregas was sent off for picking up his second yellow card of the game. But the offside flag was raised.

Southampton's run without a home goal extended to 545 minutes, dating to the end of last season, after a 0-0 draw with Swansea.

Sensing the opportunity before them, Burnley continued to press against opponents who were creating nothing in the final third and in the space of four minutes before half-time they had powered out of sight.

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