Austin is going to sparkle for Burnley FC

BURNLEY FC V NORWICH: Norwich keeper John Ruddy tips the ball clear of Charlie Austin's head.'Photo Ben Parsons
BURNLEY FC V NORWICH: Norwich keeper John Ruddy tips the ball clear of Charlie Austin's head.'Photo Ben Parsons
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CLARETS boss Eddie Howe feels new signing Charlie Austin is finding his feet at Championship level.

But he insists when he settles into his stride, the goals will flow for the 21-year-old.

Charlie Austin battles for the ball in the box

Charlie Austin battles for the ball in the box

Austin, signed for an initial £1.2m last month, has made two appearances since his switch from League 1 Swindon Town, and not had a sight of goal.

He was withdrawn after 71 minutes at Doncaster Rovers on his debut – as he struggled for any service – and just after the hour on his home bow against Norwich City on Saturday, as Howe introduced Wade Elliott – a tactical switch which ultimately helped win the game.

He has 17 goals to his name this term, after 20 last season on the way to the play-off final with the Robins, but failed to score in his last four games for Town – missing a penalty in his farewell appearance against Tranmere.

Howe, however, believes he will only benefit from his initial taste of this league, and is looking forward to making him an even better player at Turf Moor.

He said: “I think there’s a big difference between League 1 and Championship level, and I think it will take him time to adjust to the pace of the game.

“Once he does he’ll be fine, and the two games that he’s had have been really important to him.

“We’re going to look to work with him and improve him. But we know that once he gets chances, he will score goals.”

Meanwhile, Blackpool boss Ian Holloway admitted over the weekend that he was interested in Austin, but lost out to the Clarets.

The Seasiders were believed to be among a batch of clubs chasing his signature, including Ipswich Town – who agreed a fee with Swindon, and spoke to the player about personal terms – and Southampton.

Burnley, as Austin said last week, were the players’ number one choice, however, having previously spent a pre-season with Howe at Bournemouth, who were unable to sign him from neighbouring Poole Town due to a transfer embargo.

Holloway said in the Independent on Sunday: “I had given the chairman a list of players at the start of the month.

“There were at least 30 names on it, and I asked him to make enquiries about all of them.

“A couple turned us down – Adam Hammill went to Wolves and Charlie Austin to Burnley – and that is difficult, when you can’t get the targets you want because of finances.

“But I know that, I’m happy about it and I get on with it.”

Burnley climbed to 10th place with the 2-1 win over Norwich, who went into the game in second spot, moving the Clarets to within six points of sixth place Leeds, with a game in hand.

Howe’s tough baptism in the job continues, however, with a trip to Watford, in ninth, on Saturday, before the rescheduled first visit to the Cardiff City Stadium a week tonight – with Dave Jones’ men up to third after victory in the South Wales derby at Swansea on Sunday.

Six of Howe’s first seven league games in charge are away from home, after home clashes with Coventry and Middlesbrough were rearranged to accommodate live coverage of the FA Cup fifth round tie at West Ham.

But Howe places no more importance on the next two games than any other: “They’re all crucial stages of the season.

“We’ve got two tough away games to come – thankfully we’ve got a free week so we can do some work on the training pitch at last and look forward to the two games.

“They’re going to be tough, but it would be great, as has been said all season, to get consecutive wins.

“That’s our next target.”

Burnley have yet to record back to back wins in the league all season, and, indeed, back to August 2009 and the Premier League victories against Manchester United and Everton.

Vicarage Road would be a perfect place to put the record straight, with a second league double of the season, following the 3-2 win over Malky Mackay’s Hornets in November.