The substitute Manolo Gabbiadini helped relegation-threatened Southampton snatch a controversial last-gasp point to prolong the host’s winless run. Sean Dyche saw his Burnley side as high as fourth in December but their European dreams have diminished thanks to a lengthy run without a Premier League victory.
Ashley Barnes looked to have propelled Burnley to a much-needed triumph, only for a late equaliser to extend their winless top-flight run to an 11th successive match, as the Italian striker Gabbiadini fired home in the 90th minute to snatch a 1-1 draw for Southampton.
All eyes were on the referee, Bobby Madley, following the late goal. His inadvertent block on Burnley’s Ashley Westwood allowed Southampton to break, with Gabbiadini smashing home after Guido Carrillo cut the ball back.
Before that late drama, Barnes’s close-range header looked to have worsened Southampton’s plight at Turf Moor, only for the last-gasp leveller to see the visitors sneak a point that had looked beyond them for much of the match.
This is a match that may be remembered for controversy rather than quality. The England manager, Gareth Southgate, must have been questioning his decision to come to Turf Moor during a first half devoid of entertainment.
Johann Berg Gudmundsson headed wide and Aaron Lennon got a snapshot on target for the hosts, while the Burnley goalkeeper Nick Pope denied Dusan Tadic with a fine one-handed save at the other end.
The January signing Lennon was denied by a timely block from Oriol Romeu after Nathan Redmond saw an attempt stopped at the other end, but neither side had grabbed the match by the scruff of the neck.
Madley’s whistle brought respite from the first-half drudgery, a break in play that resulted in both sides upping the ante a notch. Redmond saw both a cross and an attempt on goal blocked, while the Southampton goalkeeper Alex McCarthy did well to prevent Jeff Hendrick going through.
Barnes then nodded wide for Burnley but the hosts would not be denied for long. Cédric Soares inexplicably allowed Lennon to move onto his right foot and swing in a cross to the back post. Gudmundsson’s ball across was pushed out by Hendrick, whose header back towards goal was glanced in by Barnes.
Things could have got worse had McCarthy been sent off for handling outside the area but the Southampton goalkeeper stayed on as his team tried to equalise.
Pope, so impressive since Tom Heaton’s injury, superbly tipped the substitute Sims’s shot on to a post, while Carrillo and Jack Stephens saw tame headers denied. Southampton looked bound for defeat until Madley’s block on Westwood allowed Redmond through. The ball went wide to Sims and the cross was headed back by Carrillo, with Gabbiadini rifling in.