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Ward Boost As Defender Returns To Action

10 February 2015

Defender Stephen Ward returned to action on Tuesday for the Development Squad in a 3-3 draw at Sunderland’s Academy of Light.


The Irishman played 65 minutes in his first competitive game since sustaining a hairline fracture of the foot against Newcastle in December.


Ward, who joined from Wolves in August, has featured seven times for the Clarets in the league, just two of those being defeats.


The Clarets led twice in Tuesday’s game, with Jason Gilchrist scoring a brace either side of Jamie Frost’s second half goal.


The visitors went behind after just two minutes when a ball through the defence was neatly dispatched past Daniel Nizic.


It took the youngsters the best part of half an hour to find their feet in the game, but two minutes before half time, the Clarets were level.


A surging run forward from Nathan Lowe ended with a pass to Gilchrist, who produced a skilful turn before finding the top corner with a strike from 20-yards.


Despite it being a game of few clear-cut chances, there were four more goals to be witnessed in the second half!


Burnley took the lead with 13 minutes remaining through Frost.


The attacker picked up a loose ball in the area before beating the keeper with a powerful first time strike.


Straight from the restart, however, Sunderland levelled as Nizic felled the Black Cats’ striker and was beaten from the resulting spot kick.


Four minutes later the scoring continued.


Gilchrist pounced on a deflected ball from Cameron Howieson and the forward made no mistake, finding the far corner with a deadly finish for what seemed a winner.


That wasn’t the case though as Sunderland, yet again, scored straight from the restart to earn a share of the spoils.


Burnley: Nizic; O’Neill, Anderson, Whitmore (Richardson 84), Ward (Massanka 65); Lowe (Ly 70), Howieson, Hewitt, Conlan; Frost (Galvin 84), Gilchrist.

Subs: Aghayere.

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