Burnley sprung a surprise this afternoon as Ronnie Jepson’s crisp finish proved enough to beat champions Fulham at Turf Moor.

The Clarets took advantage of the demands of an impeccable league campaign and two Cup runs appear to have caught up with Kevin Keegan’s squad at the end of a long season. The England boss joked afterwards that ‘the stretcher-bearers were contending for man of the match’ after tending to a number of injuries suffered by his side.

The most serious appeared to affect promising winger Kevin Betsy, who broke a worst after falling awkwardly on a day to forget for the Londoners. The visitors also lost forwards Paul Peschisolido and Geoff Horsfield to injuries. Before he was stretchered away, Horsfield squandered two presentable chances to give Keegan’s side the lead before they fell victim to a sucker punch seven minutes from time.

Keegan was far from impressed with the way Fulham failed to deal with what should have been a routine clearance from a long through, allowing Jepson to drive home the winner from twelve yards out.

BURNLEY (4-4-2): Crichton; Brass, Pickering (Johnrose 51), Davis, Cowan; Mellon, Armstrong, Cook, Little, Branch (Jepson 45), Cooke. Subs (not used): Reid.

BOOKED: Branch, Cowan, Pickering, Little.

GOAL: Jepson (83).

FULHAM (4-3-3): Taylor; J. Smith, Brevett, Symons, Coleman; Morgan (Smith 13), Hayward, Trollope; Horsfield (Lehmann 67), Peschisolido (Betsy 20).

BOOKED: Coleman, Symons, Trollope, Hayles.

REFEREE: Paul Rejer (West Midlands).