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Belief Pays Off For Barnes

Ashley Barnes rewards manager's faith with first goal of the season in cosy win

18 November 2017

Ashley Barnes was confident the goals would come again after he struck to help the Clarets create a bit of history at Turf Moor.

Barnes scored for the first time since his crucial effort at Crystal Palace at the end of April all but guaranteed Burnley’s survival in the Premier League last season.

Since then, Sean Dyche’s men haven’t looked back with Saturday’s decisive 2-0 win over Swansea City giving the club three successive wins in the Premier League for the first time.

And Barnes played a key role as he marked only his second league start of the season with a thundering drive to all but wrap up the points before half-time after ex-Swansea midfielder Jack Cork had headed the Clarets in front.

“Jeff (Hendrick) slid it through to me and I got a good first touch. I thought if I hit it early enough I might catch the goalie out and luckily I did,” said Barnes, who gave Swansea’s over-worked keeper Lukasz Fabianski no chance.

“It was nice to get the nod. That was really nice and all I can do is give my best.

“I believe in myself. I knew it was going to come back. That’s wasn’t a problem. It’s just getting a run, and hopefully I’ll get that now.

“You just need to look at the squad and how well everyone is doing. The competition for places and you can’t ask for much more than that as a group of players.

“It is frustrating when you’re not getting picked but these things happen in football and you’ve just to keep on going and going.”

Barnes replaced Chris Wood, not considered after his ultimately unsuccessful marathon World Cup journey with New Zealand, in the only change from the Burnley line-up that had started the Clarets 1-0 win at Southampton before the international break.

Barnes and Sam Vokes had played crucial roles off the bench at the St Mary’s Stadium and the momentum continued as Swansea went the same way as the Saints and Newcastle United in the hat-trick of wins that has kept the Clarets seventh in the table – level on points with Liverpool in fifth.

“It was fantastic from the boys,” added Barnes. “Going in after an international break is not always easy, and with the disappointment a few of the lads have had this week.

“But we’re back with winning ways again and we need to carry that on and go on a nice little run.

“We could have seen the game off a bit sooner with the chances we had – myself included – but we got the three points, which is what we set out to do.

“It’s lovely isn’t it? But we can’t take our foot off the gas. The aim is to pick up as many points as possible and see where it can take us at the end of the season.”


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