George Boyd’s first-time finish put Burnley well on the way to Premier League safety as they ended an eight-match winless streak with victory over Stoke at Turf Moor.

Sean Dyche’s Clarets had sunk back into the relegation story in recent weeks, having last tasted success against Leicester on January 31, but Boyd swept home his second of the season in the 58th minute, after good work from Jeff Hendrick, to earn a 1-0 win and some much-needed breathing space.

On 35 points with seven to play, Burnley have also overtaken their previous high watermark in the top flight – having gone down with 33 two years ago.

Burnley manager Sean Dyche: “We had to work very, very hard for this win but we’re in good shape with seven games to go. There was a bit of noise around the run we’ve been on but we knew that would come. The team is performing and there’s points on the board. We’ve given ourselves a good platform. Early season some of our performances away were not good enough but as we’ve got into the season I’ve lost large chunks of my scalp scratching my head about how we haven’t won away.”
Stoke manager Mark Hughes: “A couple of times he (Marko Arnautovic) broke, straight through once and he over-ran it and another time he waited for Saido (Berahino) and maybe he could have gone solo and got a shot off. We certainly had the chance and should have converted at least one of them. We just needed a little quality, a little guile and the ability to pick the right pass at the right time at the top end of the pitch. That was the only thing missing in my view.”

Tweet of the match

Star man – Michael Keane

Another big performance from the in-demand defender, who is central to everything Burnley do well at home. His understanding with the equally impressive Ben Mee is one of the best in the league and he is increasingly comfortable as an organiser and leader. Keane is just as happy throwing his body in front of the ball as he is playing first receiver when goalkeeper Tom Heaton wants to play short. A summer transfer battle beckons.

Stat of the day

By keeping a clean sheet, Burnley ensured they continued a remarkable return in front of their own fans. They have built their season around defensive solidity, establishing one of the Premier League’s most unlikely fortresses in the process. They have now conceded just 14 goals in 16 games at Turf Moor. As a point of reference, Liverpool and Manchester City have each conceded the same number on home soil in fewer matches.

Moment of the match

Sometimes grim-faced battles like this one need a moment of levity and Charlie Adam was on hand to provide it, albeit by accident. Running in to take a corner early in the second half the 31-year-old midfielder lost his footing and collapsed gracelessly to the turf. As the Burnley fans laughed, he looked to effect a quick re-take only for the assistant referee to penalise him for handball as he scrambled to atone.

Player ratings

Burnley: Tom Heaton: 7, Matt Lowton: 7, Michael Keane: 8, Ben Mee: 8, Stephen Ward: 7, Jeff Hendrick: 7, Joey Barton: 7, George Boyd: 7, Steven Defour: 5, Sam Vokes: 5, Andre Gray: 6. Substitutes: Robbie Brady (for Defour): 6, Ashley Barnes (for Gray): 6, James Tarkowski (for Vokes): 5.Stoke: Lee Grant: 6, Marc Muniesa: 7, Ryan Shawcross: 6, Bruno Martins Indi: 6, Erik Pieters: 6, Geoff Cameron: 7, Charlie Adam: 7, Joe Allen: 5, Marko Arnautovic: 3, Mame Diouf: 6, Saido Berahino: 6. Substitutes: Peter Crouch (for Berahino): 6, Ibrahim Affelay (for Allen): 6.

Who’s up next?

Stoke take on Liverpool
(Martin Rickett/PA Wire)

Middlesbrough v Burnley (Premier League, April 8)

Stoke v Liverpool (Premier League, April 8)