Trevor Sinclair hits out at "cowardly" Jeff Hendrick tackle

Ireland and Burnley midfielder sent off after seven minutes

Burnley, Jeff Hendrick, red card

Burnley's Jeff Hendrick (centre) reacts to be shown a red card by referee Michael Oliver (right) during the Premier League match at Vicarage Road, Watford. Picture by Nigel French PA Wire/PA Images

Match of the Day pundit Trevor Sinclair has been extremely critical of the tackle that got Ireland and Burnley's Jeff Hendrick sent off against Watford.

The midfielder was shown a straight red card within seven minutes of action at Vicarage Road after a challenge on Watford full back Jose Holebas.

Referee Michael Oliver immediately sent off the 25 year old.

And speaking on BBC's Final Score as Saturday's 3pm Premier League kick offs unfolded, ex-West Ham and England winger Sinclair did not hold back in his criticism of Hendrick.

"Definite red card. Really, really cowardly challenge," he said. 

"Over the top. No intention of playing the ball and he will be disappointed with that, Hendrick."

He added that Burnley's poor form away from home meant Hendrick's red card would only make a tough task even more daunting.

Shortly after the red card, Watford went 1-0 through captain Troy Deeney as Burnley were forced to contend with being a man down.

New January signing Mbaye Niang, who arrived on loan from AC Milan, doubled that lead in first half stoppage time.

But Ashley Barnes pulled one back with 12 minutes to go via the penalty spot.

But Sean Dyche's side were unable to find an equaliser. 

Ireland's Robbie Brady, who joined Burnley on transfer deadline day, started the game on the bench and made his debut for the club when he was brought on for striker Andre Gray on 55 minutes.

Ireland left back Stephen Ward also started the match.