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Taylor Steps Up Comeback

11 March 2015

Clarets midfielder Matthew Taylor continued his return to action with a 70-minute run-out in the Development Squad’s 1-1 draw against Fleetwood Town.

The former West Ham and Portsmouth centre man upped his return to first team action, building on his 45-minute comeback against Wigan last Friday.

Taylor, 33, put in a solid performance alongside Steven Hewitt and Cameron Howieson in midfield, as he looks to play a part in the Clarets vital run-in after recovering from an Achilles operation in October.

The other first team player involved in the friendly was Marvin Sordell, who will gain confidence after scoring a rocket at Bury’s Carrington Training Ground.

The Clarets also fielded a trialist, who played the full game at centre half. And Burnley were thankful to the defender, who contributed with a vital clearance off the line on the half hour mark.

The development squad faced played Fleetwood for the third time this season and former Clarets Graham Alexander and Steve Davis watched on from the side-lines.

The duo watched an unexciting first half where neither side had a shot on target, with the two teams both struggling for possession on a bobbly pitch.

However, the deadlock was broken on the hour mark. A ball in from the right was met with a deadly header past Daniel Nizic as the ‘Cod Army’ took the lead.

Youth team winger Bradley Jackson had Burnley’s best chance of replying in the 66th minute.

Sordell burst past Fleetwood’s midfield before finding Massanka in the box and the two substitutes combined neatly, but Jackson could only find the side netting from just inside the area.

The Clarets, though, were level 12 minutes from time when from nowhere, Sordell blasted the leveller with a sensational strike from 25-yards that flew past Fleetwood’s goalkeeper.

Both sides then had chances to win it.

Five minutes from time Fleetwood came within inches as a ball in from the right dangerously rolled across the goal-line, begging for a touch which almost certainly would have found the back of the net.

And the Clarets almost nicked it with the last kick of the game when Howieson tried to replicate Sordell’s earlier effort, but saw his strike whistle past the visitor’s crossbar.

Burnley: Nizic; Daly, Anderson (Whitmore 45), Trialist, Conlan; Ly (Jackson 45), Taylor (O’Neill 70), Hewitt, Howieson; Frost (Massanka 62), Sordell.

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