NEW Clarets boss Eddie Howe felt he should have been celebrating a winning start to his reign.
Burnley drew 0-0 at relegation-threatened Scunthorpe United in Howe’s first game in charge, after replacing former Iron manager Brian Laws.
But, having dominated possession and crafted the better chances, he was disappointed not to take all three points.
As it was, the side had to settle for a clean sheet, and Howe was deighted with his players’ endeavour on a tricky pitch: “I’m a touch frustrated because I thought in the second half we were excellent, created a number of chances, and we felt we should have won the game.
“But also we’re pleased because of how we played, and the manner in which we played, the attitude of the players.
“You can see their ability.
“It’s a point, it’s a start, but we’re disappointed we didn’t get three.
“The finishing was a little wayward at times, but at least we’re creating the openings and getting in the goalscoring positions.
“That’s always the hardest thing to do.
“I can’t be critical of anybody. It was a good performance.”
Scunthorpe took the pitch out of the equation and went from back to front, while Burnley tried to move the ball about on a bobbly surface, and Howe added: “The lads played some great football at times, on one of the worst pitches I’ve seen in a long time.
“It wasn’t conducive to good football, and Scunthorpe make it difficult for you here. It’s a tight pitch, they’re quite direct and play a lot of balls in your half, and I thought we defended really well.
“A second clean sheet in a row is a really pleasing thing. It was just the final product, and that final piece in the jigsaw.
“We did everything but score.”
As a defender, though, Howe knows full well the importance of keeping the back door shut, and that, at least, is a building block: “You need a solid foundation, you need to keep clean sheets.
“I thought the back four, the goalkeeper, and the midfield four, who worked extremely hard in front, were excellent.
“That is a real pleasing thing and hopefully we can build on it from here.”
After a full week of training and his first game, Howe has been pleased with what he has seen so far, and is encouraged by the resources he has to work with: “I was pleased, more importantly, with the attitude of the players. They really wanted to perform, and really wanted to win the game. That’s pleasing from my point of view.
“I think we’ve got a lot of good things to work with, so from our point of view this week’s beeen a very positive experience.”