BURNLEY Under-23s secured a second win of their Professional Development League season thanks to Dwight McNeil’s goal.

Michael Duff’s side made it three games unbeaten with victory over Leeds United at Curzon Ashton’s Tameside Stadium.

The two teams had gone into this encounter locked together on four points, but it was the Clarets who edged a tight game in their first fixture of the season at the home of the National League North side, which will be their regular base for Under-23 fixtures.

Leeds should have been ahead on 12 minutes as the lively Alex Machuca, a 19-year-old midfielder who joined the Whites from Rayo Vallecano this summer, broke into a good position down the inside right channel and squared for Eoghan Stokes who somehow side footed over the bar from six yards.

In a half of few chances the Clarets best sight of goal followed some good work down by the right by Tunda Bayode, who was first to a loose ball on the halfway line and then showed good pace to break clear. His cross found Jamie Thomas but the advancing striker volleyed wide from 15 yards.

Anders Lindegaard was the only senior member of the Clarets side in action and he touched Madger Gomes’ angled drive behind, making sure of the save although it looked like the shot was drifting wide.

Stokes came closer with an effort before the break, dragging a shot across goal and wide after a loose clearing header from Bayode on the right.

Duff made a double change at half-time, with Tinashe Chakwana and Rahis Nabi coming on for Jamie Thomas and Christian N’Guessan.

It was Chakwana who had Burnley’s first change of the second half as he was foiled at the near post as he tried to force home a low Khius Metz cross.

Lindegaard, who was being watched by Clarets goalkeeping coach Billy Mercer, was called into action on the hour to deal with a loose Oliver Younger backpass, narrowly beating Stokes to the ball and clearing his lines.

The goal that gave Burnley the lead owed plenty to the persistence and composure of McNeil, even if it also had a stroke of luck.

McNeil and Chakwana battled for the ball on the edge of the area and as the Whites struggled to clear their lines the ball ricocheted off a defender and fell for McNeil, who calmly clipped his finish past Will Huffer in the Leeds goal.

The Whites came close to an equaliser when Jack McKay’s shot from inside the area took a deflection of Oliver Younger and looped over Lindegaard’s crossbar.

The visitors were being urged on by their energetic coach Carlos Corberán, a constant presence on the touchline, who joined the club this summer after coaching stints with Villarreal, Ermis in Cyprus and Saudi Arabian side Al Nassr, but they were finding the Clarets a difficult proposition to break down.

Instead it was Burnley who came close to a second on the break as McNeil fed Chakwana and he used his pace to break clear down the right before sending in a low cross which fell to fellow substitute Nabi, but his low drive was straight at Huffer.

There was time for one final chance in injury time for Burnley, with Chakwana’s shot from Metz’s cross blocked before the looping ball fell nicely for Metz, who headed wide.

Burnley: Anders Lindegaard, Arlen Birch, Harry Flowers, Oliver Younger, Ali Koiki, Tunda Bayode, Mark Howarth, Christian N’Guessan (Rahis Nabi 46), Dwight McNeil, Jamie Thomas (Tinashe Chakwana 46), Khius Metz

Subs not used: Aiden Stone, James Clarke, Tommy Wood