Heaton unsurprised to see Clarets edge games

Goalkeeper Tom Heaton isn't surprised to see the Clarets edging the tight margins in the Premier League this season.

Tuesday, 17th January 2017, 8:30 am
Burnley's Ben Mee salutes the performance of Tom Heaton as the pair celebrate with fans Photographer Alex Dodd/CameraSport The Premier League - Burnley v Southampton - Saturday 14th January 2017 - Turf Moor - Burnley World Copyright © 2017 CameraSport. All rights reserved. 43 Linden Ave. Countesthorpe. Leicester. England. LE8 5PG - Tel: +44 (0) 116 277 4147 - [email protected] - www.camerasport.com

Last time out in the top flight Sean Dyche’s side drew 12 times and lost a further nine games by a single goal as they were relegated back to the Championship with 33 points.

However, there’s a different tale to tell this term as five of Burnley’s eight wins - all at Turf Moor - have been by a solitary strike.

Late strikes from Scott Arfield and Ashley Barnes saw the Clarets through in victories over Everton and Crystal Palace respectively, Bournemouth were beaten 3-2, while Andre Gray proved to be the match-winner against Middlesbrough.

And the weekend win typified such character and professionalism as Joey Barton’s set-piece on his second homecoming was the difference against the Saints.

“Southampton are a good side, the manager talked about staying in the game, being tough to break down and not giving anything away,” said the skipper. “We felt we’d always get a chance and that was a fine example of that.

“We always spoke this week about the togetherness and bond we’ve got in the club and the dressing room. It’s not easy to find and it’s not easy to keep, but we’ve got it in abundance.

“In games like today where it’s tight, I thought it was a good game tactically, it was on a knife edge, and those are the games where that bond and togetherness really shines through. It was no massive surprise we’ve come out with three points.”

Following a fifth clean sheet of the campaign, Heaton added: “We’ve got a little bit more experience and a bit more belief once people have been there and done it.

“We’ve added in quality, we’ve got better, we’ve evolved, we got strength in depth.

“But it’s fine margins. It’s important you try and keep moving things forward.

“One of the biggest factors in that is the experience. You realise you might need to weather that storm to stay in the game and for someone to pop up and put one it. It was all new to us first time around.”