Donny edge Clarets in tight affair

An inspired performance from James Coppinger proved the catalyst in Doncaster's 1-0 defeat of Burnley at the Keepmoat Stadium.

Last Updated: 01/02/11 at 22:36

Coppinger: Key man for Donny

Coppinger: Key man for Donny

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

The 29-year-old was imperious throughout the Championship fixture and helped the home side end a run of four consecutive defeats, during which they conceded 13 goals.

After edging the encounter, Coppinger provided the decisive 59th-minute cross that Burnley's Michael Duff could only divert into his own goal.

The Northern Irishman's mishap ended the Clarets' five-match unbeaten run and saw Eddie Howe taste defeat for the first time as manager of the Lancashire outfit.

Doncaster were boosted heading into the clash by the inclusion of skipper Brian Stock after a calf injury, while Sam Hird deputised in central defence for the injured Matt Kilgallon.

Rovers boss Sean O'Driscoll also handed 20-year-old goalkeeper Gary Woods his first ever start after first-choice Neil Sullivan picked up an injury.

Burnley boss Howe, meanwhile, dropped Steven Thompson from the visitors' attack in favour of new signing Charlie Austin, who joined from Swindon on Friday.

The inclusion of Austin was the only change to the side that knocked Burton out of the FA Cup at the weekend - and his inclusion almost paid dividend within four minutes.

Jack Cork sent a drilled cross in from the right wing that Woods could only parry to Austin, who should have done better in the six-yard box.

Aside from Austin's opportunity, chances were sparse in the opening exchanges as the two sides cancelled one another out.

Rovers began to exert an increasing amount of pressure midway through the first half, with Coppinger seeing a shot deflect into the side netting before James O'Connor flashed a shot wide from the resulting corner.

James Hayter was unfortunate to put wide in the 29th minute when connecting with a cross at the back post as the home side surged forward in droves, looking particularly dangerous down the flanks.

Hayter was proving a menace in attack, firing inches wide before Danny Fox's goal-line clearance prevented the former Bournemouth man breaking the deadlock on the stroke of half-time.

Coppinger was the vital component in both moves and proved integral to Rovers once more after the break.

Having been clattered by Danny Fox moments earlier, Coppinger attacked the now yellow-carded full back and whipped in a dangerous-looking cross that Duff managed to header into his own goal.

Burnley, seemingly spurred on by the goal, pressed forward in numbers, coming close through Dean Marney's low drive and Jay Rodriguez's looping header.

Chris Iwelumo was agonisingly close to connecting with a free header out with 10 minutes remaining as the visitors piled forward with intent.

O'Driscoll's side, however, were able to grind out the victory and Burnley's defeat was compounded by a worrying-looking thigh injury sustained by substitute Martin Patterson.

Football365 Facebook Fan Page

The Football365 fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

Footer 365

Jose Mourinho: It's only a matter of time before John Terry gets new contract

John Terry will definitely stay at Chelsea beyond the end of his current deal, Jose Mourinho says.

Chelsea striker Fernando Torres to make permanent move to AC Milan ahead of Atletico Madrid return

Fernando Torres will join Milan permanently on January 5 ahead of his expected return to Atletico Madrid.

Neil Warnock sacked by Crystal Palace after run of one win in 12 games

Neil Warnock has been sacked as manager of Crystal Palace, with Keith Millen placed in charge for Sunday's trip to QPR.

Mail Box

Van Gaal's Half-Term Report Card...

One Man United fan isn't happy with the rate the team is progressing under Louis van Gaal, while the mailbox also wishes Liverpool fans a Merry Mid-Table Christmas...

Hang On, Rafa's Success Is No Fluke...

The afternoon mailbox kicks the morning mailbox's arse after claims that Rafa Benitez has fluked his success. Plus, big talk about Liverpool's progress and lots more...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property