Patrick Vieira could only chuckle at what he called a “crazy good game” after his Crystal Palace side took a point from a thrilling 3-3 draw at Burnley.
Palace led, then trailed, then led again a five-goal first half, but after Maxwel Cornet levelled with a stunning volley early in the second half Burnley were unlucky not to win it with Matej Vydra bringing a fine save out of Vicente Guaita with almost the last kick of the game.
It was a result that pleased both managers. Burnley remain in the bottom three but have put their early-season woes behind them to pick up points consistently – the only defeat in their last seven league games coming away to Manchester City – while Palace are unbeaten in seven.
Few would have arrived at Turf Moor expecting a goal-fest but that is what they got – Christian Benteke scored twice, either side of headers from Ben Mee and Chris Wood for Burnley, before Marc Guehi gave Palace a half-time lead.
“It was a crazy good game,” Vieira said. “Both teams maybe brought a different philosophy to the game but both tried to win it. I think for the neutral it was a good game to watch.
“At the end there is a good feeling because of the save, that was the biggest chance they created in the second half and it was an important save from Vince to allow us to go back to London with a point.
“I was a little bit disappointed with how we managed the game but that’s just showing the team needs to grow. There is a maturity we didn’t have today to really manage the game better.”
Palace led just eight minutes in as Joachim Andersen teed up Benteke for his first, but after Conor Gallagher missed a chance to double the advantage, Burnley hit back.
Sean Dyche had identified set-pieces as a potential Palace weakness and Burnley duly exploited them – Mee headed in from Ashley Westwood’s corner to level, then James Tarkowski headed Dwight McNeil’s free-kick across goal for Wood to nod in his 50th Premier League goal.
But having taken the lead, Burnley let it slip just as quickly – Gallagher played in Benteke who fired home an equaliser and Guehi lashed home on the rebound just before the break when Nick Pope had denied Andersen.
However, Burnley were much brighter after the break, inspired by Cornet’s volley as they had a number of chances to win it
“We didn’t start well, but in the second half it was a different story,” Dyche said. “We were a lot braver in our performance.
“To go in at 3-2 we could be disappointed but we came out in the second half, scored a fantastic goal and Vyds has a golden moment at the end, their keeper makes a fantastic save to be fair.”
However, Dyche was unhappy with referee Simon Hooper.
There was a shout for a Palace red card when Wood, through on goal, went down under a challenge from Andersen in the second half, while Dyche was also unhappy to see Tarkowski booked in a tangle with Wilfried Zaha – ruling him out of next week’s match against Tottenham.
“I’m all for allowing some of these soft things, it’s trying to find the balance, but that’s bizarre,” Dyche said of the challenge on Wood.
“He’s got two hands around his chest. Whoever’s looking at that, I’ve no clue how they’ve not given it.
“The other one is Tarks getting booked when he’s trying to stop the trouble…He had a quiet game today, the referee wasn’t clear-minded. Another day you might get them.”
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