Eddie Howe pleased with second chance in the FA Cup

Eddie Howe
Eddie Howe

CLARETS boss Eddie Howe took full advantage of a second chance in the FA Cup by guiding Burnley into the last 16 for the fifth time in the last 10 seasons.

Howe, knocked out by Notts County with Bournemouth at the second round stage, took charge of his first home game since taking the reins.

And Burnley eased to a 3-1 win over League 2 Burton Albion, with a brace from Chris Eagles and one from Martin Paterson in his first appearance for three months.

Howe smiled after: “It’s weird that you get knocked out one year and then you come back in again. It’s pretty strange but I’m delighted to still be in it.

“But it was a tough game. Burton made it very difficult for us, we did expect that.

“They showed they’re a decent side but thankfully we came out on top.

“It was a little bit disappointing that at 2-0 we were seeing out the game quite comfortably, they get one and there’s always going to be a nervy 10 minutes, but I thought we actually saw out the game really well, and once we got the third we could rest a little bit easier on the bench.”

Eagles scored in either half, and also struck the bar with an effort which, on repeated viewing, is hard to determine whether it went over the line or not.

And Howe said: “I think he was unlucky (not to score a hat-trick), I thought he was excellent.

“He took up some great positions and I thought he linked play really well.

“He took his goals well – his first one especially was a really good move.

“I thought he performed really well.

“We started him wide and played him in a couple of positions. He was good in all of them. He’s a hard man to pick up, he drifts all over the pitch. He’s a really good footballer, so we’re pleased with him.”

Paterson was on the mark after a niggling thigh problem had kept him out since early November, and Howe is delighted – on the back of the signing of Charlie Austin, to have more striking options at his disposal: “I’m really pleased for Pato to come back. He’s had a frustrating time on the sidelines.

“I think we’re all aware of his ability, he came on and looked razor sharp so that’s a real positive for him.

“For any player who’s been out injured for a while, I know how frustrating it can be. Just for him to be back out playing on the pitch, and of course scoring, that’s what he wants to do.

“He’s had a couple of setbacks with a niggly injury.

“We’ve tried to be really careful with him and make sure this time that he stays fit.

“I thought he looked bright so the signs are good for him.”

Howe named an unchanged side after the trip to Portsmouth – despite another league game at Doncaster following tonight, and Howe admitted he just wanted to get through to the fifth round: “In some senses we would have liked to make changes, but the cup is really high on our priority list and we wanted to make sure we won the game.

“Now our focus turns to Doncaster and we’ll make sure we get that.”