28 February 2022

James Tarkowski says a back to basics approach has helped Clarets climb

28 February 2022

Getting back to basics and pulling together has helped Burnley move towards Premier League safety, according to defender James Tarkowski.

The Clarets managed only one victory from their first 21 league games but back-to-back successes against Brighton and Tottenham and a draw with Crystal Palace at the weekend have lifted them to within one point of 16th-placed Everton.

A point or better against Leicester on Tuesday would see Sean Dyche’s team climb out of the bottom three.

Nearly half their points have come since a 3-1 defeat by fellow strugglers Leeds at the beginning of January, after which the manager held a frank meeting with his players.

“Everyone got things off their chest and we started from that point onwards and all sort of got on board together, which we needed to do, because things weren’t going great with us,” said Tarkowski.

“We’ve gone a bit back to basics – we were trying to over-complicate things a little bit. Sometimes it gets difficult, when things aren’t going your way you can try to look at yourself a bit too much and stop worrying about the team. Everyone’s on board and you can see it in the performances recently.

“We’ve got a lot of experience in our team and at the moment we’re playing well and we’re confident. But we’ve just got to continue that over the rest of the season.”

Speculation about Tarkowski’s future is sure to ramp up in the coming months prior to the end of his contract this summer but the defender has again been one of Burnley’s star performers in recent weeks despite a bout of Covid.

They have been notably tight at the back and will have high hopes of a good result against Leicester, who are winless in their last five league games and also suffered a 4-1 FA Cup defeat by Nottingham Forest.

“I think they’re a very good side,” said Tarkowski. “They’ve not had the greatest season but I think, if you look at their injuries, they’ve had lads go to African Cup of Nations, they’ve had a lot of Covid as well.

“I’m not expecting an easy game by any means but we’re in good form, there’s a confidence around us and hopefully another good result for us.”

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