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Barton: I Won't Settle For Second Best

24 February 2016

Joey Barton insists he will not settle for second best as bang in-form Burnley look to emulate the class of 2014.

The Clarets strengthened their hold on second spot in the Championship with a hard-fought victory over Nottingham Forest on Tuesday.

And midfield maestro Barton, who reiterated his intention to extend his contract at Turf Moor, insists he is striving to better the achievement of Sean Dyche’s side promotion side of two years ago, which finished runners-up with a record number of points.

He told Clarets Player HD: “We are in a good spot and what’s important is that we finish well.

“For me, second is not what I came here to do and I keep communicating that to the team.

“A lot of people might take second, but I came here to win the league.

“Two years ago, the team here finished second and we have to build on that. I wasn’t privy to that team, but I watched them from a distance and they have to be our benchmark.

“There’s a lot of those lads still here, but you don’t rest on your laurels and accept what that team did.

“It’s important that we keep driving and for me, that means first place.

“Aim small and miss small is my motto and we can’t get too far ahead of ourselves, but we are right where we need to be.”

Barton was again a driving force as Burnley made it seven wins in an unbeaten 10 league games since Boxing Day, for the form team of the Championship.

Sam Vokes celebrates his winner v Nottingham Forest on Tuesday

But he added: “We haven’t focused on that run. Obviously we were really disappointed to lose at Hull, but they’ve been good at home and obviously we reversed that result here at Turf.

“It’s very, very positive, but we’re not focusing on records or unbeaten runs.

“The gaffer is very much of the one-game-at-a-time mantra and that filters down to us.

“We’ll just control the controllables and Tuesday was another one ticked off.

“I don’t think it was the best we’ve played this season, but Forest came with a game plan and it shows an awful lot of credit to our boys that teams are coming here and getting 10 men behind the ball and looking to catch us on the counter.

“We stuck at the task manfully and thankfully Sam (Vokes) popped up and knocked in the winner, so it’s another massive three points for us.

“We’ve shown, as we did against Rotherham last Saturday, that there are many different ways of winning a football match and I think it’s a sign of teams that go on and get promoted - and certainly teams that end up being champions – that when the ball doesn’t quite fall for you, find a way to win.”

A full eight-minute interview with Joey can now be viewed on Clarets Player HD. CLICK HERE for details.

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