Eager to put an end to their streak of four consecutive home defeats upon their return to the top flight this season, newly promoted Burnley sprang into a surprising 15th-minute lead, with Wilson Odobert scoring his inaugural goal in English football, leaving the visitors momentarily stunned.
Chelsea initially struggled to respond until, in the most unfortunate circumstances, Ameen Al Dakhil netted an own goal just three minutes before halftime, levelling the score for Mauricio Pochettino‘s squad.
Having previously notched a win in their last 19 matches when conceding the opening goal in the Premier League, a streak that extended back to October 2022, Chelsea orchestrated a comeback early in the second half. Cole Palmer capitalized from the penalty spot, securing their lead.
A superb goal from Sterling and a fourth strike courtesy of substitute Nicolas Jackson then pushed the game out of reach for the home team. This victory elevated Chelsea to ninth place in the standings, while Burnley, with only one win this season, remained in the relegation zone.
Both teams exhibited signs of unfamiliarity with each other’s playing styles initially, with Palmer’s long-range strike being the sole noteworthy effort on goal during the opening exchanges.
Sterling’s blistering strike narrowly missed the target before Odobert collected a pass from Lyle Foster and fired the ball through the legs of Chelsea full-back Marc Cucurella into the bottom corner, making the 18-year-old Burnley’s youngest-ever Premier League goalscorer.
While Chelsea enjoyed significant possession for the remainder of the first half, it seemed as though they would head into halftime on level terms. However, Al Dakhil’s redirection of Sterling’s cross into the home goalkeeper James Trafford’s net changed the dynamics of the match. Five minutes into the second half, Sterling once again took center stage, drawing a foul from Vitinho and granting Palmer the opportunity to open his Chelsea account, which he accomplished emphatically.
A third goal appeared inevitable, and Conor Gallagher played a pivotal role by sending Sterling through for the England international to clinically bag his third goal of the season. Jackson, orchestrated by Palmer, notched a well-executed fourth goal for Chelsea, leaving their fans elated as they returned to the capital. It marked the first time in 71 matches in all competitions that Chelsea had scored four or more goals.
Burnley coach Vincent Kompany acknowledged the challenging nature of the league, stating, “It goes to show what this league is about. You are playing well for one half, and it’s not enough. Everyone has to level up. I’d like a magic wand, but it’s a lot of work in training and getting the basics right. In spells, we’ve done it really well, but it’s just spells.”
(With Reuters inputs)