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Westy Ready For Lift-Off

Midfielder looking forward to Premier League return after chance to re-charge

12 September 2018

Ashley Westwood is ready to tackle the Premier League head-on after a chance to draw breath during the international break.

The Clarets to go Wolves on Sunday in search of their first league win of the season.

And Westwood believes being able to give full focus to domestic matters will help after a hectic start to the campaign featuring six ties in as many weeks in the Europa League.

“We were desperate to do well in Europe. We said from the back end of last season we wanted to do well and give it a go,” said the Clarets’ midfielder, who has already started nine matches this term.

“We gave it a good go against Olympiakos. The two games before that were really tough and I don’t think we could have had a tougher draw, to be honest.

“But we’re not crying about it.  We gave it our best, it just wasn’t meant to be and now we’re looking forward to the Premier League.”

Burnley got past Aberdeen and Istanbul Basaksehir in their first foray into Europe for half a century before missing out on a place in the group stages of the Europa League following a 4-2 aggregate defeat to Olympiakos.

That was despite an heroic second-leg effort at Turf Moor against the Greek side, which preceded a 2-0 home loss to Manchester United to go into the fortnight break. 

Sean Dyche’s squad have used the hiatus to “refresh legs and minds” as part of their build-up towards Sunday’s return to action at Molineux to face last season’s Championship winners.

And despite going to the West Midlands with just one point on the board from their opening four matches, Westwood is expecting an upturn in fortunes.

“We don’t worry about that. We keep that to one side. We’re a tight group. We know what we’re about. And now we’re out of Europe we can focus on what we’re good at,” added the former Aston Villa man, an ever-present so far in the Premier League as he continues his impressive run in the side.

“It’s not nice looking at the table and seeing where we are. But we’ve not been far away.

“We’re not making excuses, but I think the Thursday games had an effect on us.

“Our games are about the intensity we play and when you’re doing that on a Sunday after a tough game on the Thursday it does take it out of your legs.

“We’re out of that now and we’re back to one game a week and hopefully you’ll see the real Burnley again now. Hopefully that shows on Sunday.”

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