Clarets striker Wood isn't giving up on his dreams of reaching group stages

Striker Chris Wood has every confidence that the Clarets will do everything necessary to book their place in the Europa League group stages at the expense of Olympiakos.

Tuesday, 28th August 2018, 8:00 am
Burnley's Chris Wood during the pre-match warm-up Photographer David Shipman/CameraSport The Premier League - Fulham v Burnley - Sunday August 26th 2018 - Craven Cottage - London World Copyright © 2018 CameraSport. All rights reserved. 43 Linden Ave. Countesthorpe. Leicester. England. LE8 5PG - Tel: +44 (0) 116 277 4147 - [email protected] -

Burnley trail 3-1 from the first leg at the Karaiskakis Stadium in Athens as Thrylos skipper Kostas Fortounis scored twice, either side of assisting midfielder Andreas Bouchalakis’s finish early in the second half.

New Zealand international Wood had equalised for the visitors in Greece, picking himself up to score from the spot in the 33rd minute after drawing the foul from Mohamed Camara.

Sean Dyche’s side rallied following Ben Gibson’s harsh dismissal on the hour, putting everything on the line to prevent the hosts from taking the tie away from them.

With an away goal to build on in the decisive leg at Turf Moor on Thursday, the 26-year-old said: “The away goal is always going to help and it definitely keeps us in the tie.

“I’m sure we’ve enough to do it at home, we just have to work hard and make sure we get the result. We’re more than capable of doing that.

“We’re definitely still in it. I’ve every confidence that we can do it back at home. We’ve just got to stay positive.

“Turf Moor is a tough place for anybody to come to and we know that we can play good football there. We’re looking forward to it.”

Burnley’s form in the Premier League, with seven goals conceded in their previous couple of losses to Watford and Fulham, has led to suggestions that the club would be much better off without any additional commitments.

Ex England boss Sam Allardyce was one of those to weigh in on the debate, inferring that the Clarets should forfeit the Europa League to concentrate on their domestic obligations.

But Wood doesn’t share that view and is determined to progress in the competition. “It’s nice, it’s something different, it’s always a good atmosphere,” he said. “Hopefully we can do enough to proceed in the competition.

“Everybody has got their own opinions on how to manage a competition like this. For us, and for most people, it’s just another game.

“It’s no more than what was done in the Championship so you get your mindset right and you’ll be fine. We’re enjoying it and I’m sure the fans are enjoying it.

“We’ll just go out there and do it again. About 95% of the squad has played in the Championship, they’ve played 50 games in a season before, so it’s not too much more for us.”

l Jack Cork says the Clarets will get in the faces of the 44-time Greek Super League champions on Thursday in hope of netting an early goal.

The midfielder, who has scored twice in the qualifiers, both coming in extra-time against Aberdeen and Istanbul Basaksehir, wants the home side to get on the front foot and apply the pressure from the first kick.

With Sean Dyche’s side required to score a minimum of two goals to stand any hope of advancing to the group stages, the former Chelsea man said: “We were all angry after the first leg. What happened was crazy and there wasn’t much we could do about it.

“It was a good tie to play in. It was a good experience but it’s just a shame that the second half started like it did.

“That sort of ruined the game but it will be completely different on Thursday. If we can get an early goal it will change everything.

“Hopefully our fans can make it difficult for them like their fans made it for us over there.”

“We’ve just got to get our heads down and take the game to them.

“We’ll go for it, try to get an early goal, then there’s only one goal in it.”