Clarets winger Michael Kightly has declared that Premier League survival could hinge on the form of leading scorer Danny Ings.
The England Under 21 international, who scored 21 league goals last term as the Clarets were promoted from the Championship, netted a brace in the 2-1 victory over Stoke City at the Britannia Stadium to help Sean Dyche’s side climb off the foot of the table.
“Having a natural finisher like Ings can be the difference between survival and relegation,” said Kightly.
“Danny is brilliant to work with, he is different class, one of the best strikers I’ve played with and still so young as well. He is going to be a top player.
“It scares you what he can do so young and he has got a good head on him. He works really hard. I think he’ll be playing for England one day. He deserves everything he gets because he works his socks off.”
Kightly also recognised the impact that long term absentee Sam Vokes could have on his return.
The 25-year-old contributed 22 goals in all competitions for the Clarets last season is nearing some game time behind closed doors after being sidelined since March when he ruptured his anterior cruciate knee ligament.
“We’ve got Same Vokes to come back too,” said Kightly. “He scored bags of goals last season. He’s our Player of the Year. Goals win you games and he’s been a big miss for us.”
Former Potter Kightly returned to his old stomping ground to haunt former boss Mark Hughes.
The 28-year-old, who made 22 Premier League appearances for Stoke, scoring three times, beat Phil Bardsley to assist Ings’s second in the 13th minute as the Clarets secured their 10th point of the term.
“Sometimes it’s difficult coming back against your old club,” he said. “I didn’t feel like it was any sort of different game for me. It felt like a normal game and it was nice to get a couple of assists.
“Back to back wins is massive for us. They’re really tough to get in this division. We’ve got that belief with that first win against Hull and hopefully we can build on it.
“We’ve got a really good togetherness in the squad and games like today help us believe.”