Eddie Howe left to rue slow start

Eddie Howe
Eddie Howe

CLARETS boss Eddie Howe admitted he was more frustrated than relieved after watching his side come back from two goals down to draw with Watford.

Burnley were staring an opening day defeat in the face as goals from Craig Forsyth and Mark Yeates put the Hornets 2-0 up with 20 minutes to play.

But substitute Keith Treacy, making his debut after moving from Preston during the week, came on to have a major impact.

His shot ricocheted in off Charlie Austin, before he got on the end of Ross Wallace’s cross to head the equaliser.

Howe was disappointed to be trailing 2-0 in the first place, however: “I’m frustrated.

“I thought we were excellent in the first half up until the last minute.

“We just switched off for a second and it cost us.

“Apart from that I was delighted. I just felt we needed to score while we were on top

“We passed and moved the ball really well. We probably lacked that cutting edge and that finishing touch really, but we put a lot of balls in their box and put them under pressure and I was disappointed not to be ahead.

“At 2-0 down with 20 minutes to go I suppose we’re pleased with a point. but we wanted to win the game.”

Treacy started on the bench as he looks to get up to full fitness, but Howe was delighted with his contribution: “Keith showed a snippet of what he’s about.

“I thought he was excellent when he came on and gave us another dimension and played a part in both goals obviously.

“He looked a real threat.”

Treacy is renowned for his left foot, and Howe was surprised to see him pop up with a headed equaliser: “I said to Jason (Tindall) when it went in, I didn’t know he had that in his locker!

“I knew he had the ability but that was a great finish and a good ball in by Ross Wallace.

“It’s just a shame the game couldn’t go on longer.”

Another plus was Austin getting off the mark in his fifth competitive appearance since his January move from Swindon.

There was a touch of fortune in it, but Howe hopes it gives him a real shot in the arm: “Confidence is the main thing. I think when you come to any new club you want to hit the ground running.

“Unfortunately he got injured and now he’s just making his way back, so there’s a lot more to come from him, but that goal will definitely help.”

Austin replaced Martin Paterson at half-time and Howe explained: “Pato was just not feeling 100 per cent.

“I wouldn’t say it was a recurrence of any injury but he just said he couldn’t play to his full potential, so he had to come off, which is a huge blow for us.

“We need to make sure we get Pato 100 per cent fit.

“He’s done all the pre-season and been fine, so it came as a bit of a surprise. I thought he looked quite sharp first half as well.

“Thankfully we had Charlie to come on. I think he scored with his face but it’s his first goal. We’re pleased he’s off the mark.”

While Treacy will miss tomorrow (Tuesday) night’s Carling Cup clash at home to Burton Albion on international duty with the Republic of Ireland against Croatia, Paterson will be withdrawn from the Northern Ireland squad to face the Faroe Islands: “We’ll speak to them and say that we need Pato here with us.”