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Farrell: We Rose To The Challenge

Under-23s come from behind again to take point from U23 champions Leeds

29 October 2019

Andy Farrell believes tackling Roses rivals Leeds United brings the best out of the Clarets after another successful comeback at Elland Road.

Last season Dwight McNeil inspired a fightback from 2-0 down to earn a share of the points in the U23 Professional Development League.

And on Monday night, Burnley again came from behind to extend their unbeaten start to the season as a Josh Benson penalty secured a 1-1 draw against the defending league champions who started the game with seven players boasting first-team experience.

“We always look forward to this one,” said Farrell – the Clarets’ U23s’ assistant coach.

“We see it on the calendar – being at Elland Road for starters and then we know there are going to be a number of first-team fringe players in the Leeds team.

Benson taking PEN.jpg

“We know ourselves that when we get a couple of first-team players drop down we’re stronger. You have to be.

“The challenge is to be as good, if not better than them, to catch the eye because that’s where you want to be.

“If you’re 21-22 at a lot of clubs you’re actually playing in the first team.

“But I thought we more than matched them. We went 1-0 down and it was a case where you might see that going from one to two, but not the way we approach it.

“We are very resilient and relentless in terms of what we do.”

Leeds – who also brought on two first-team men after the break – took the lead through Ryan Edmondson’s 25th-minute header before the Clarets grew into the game.

Harker running.jpg

And their impressive second-half performance – which also saw Ali Koiki hit the woodwork with a long-range strike – was rewarded when Lewis Richardson was pushed over to earn a penalty which Benson converted to claim his first goal of the season as Burnley stayed two points behind leaders Nottingham Forest in the northern group.

“The boys were excellent. There were some good qualities,” Farrell added.

“The hold-up play from Rob (Harker) was very good – probably the best we’ve seen him – and in all a good performance from the whole team really.

“Their attitude and approach to getting around the ball and tracking and recovering and getting back into shape was excellent.

“I think that’s probably come from where the first team are and their team beliefs.

“We are just following suit and the lads are taking it on board really well.”

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