Burnley FC striker Austin sets sights on first hat-trick

CLARETS striker Charlie Austin is hungry for a first professional hat-trick after his first brace for the club.

Tuesday, 30th August 2011, 12:30 pm

Austin took his tally to five goals in six appearances so far this season with both goals in the 2-1 win at Derby on Saturday.

It was only the third time he has scored twice in the Football League since leaving non-league football to join Swindon Town in October 2009, although he now has 42 goals in 75 appearances as a pro.

Austin came close to that first treble, hitting the post in the first half, while he also had another late chance after great work from strike partner Jay Rodriguez, and he said: “I hit the post in the first half and should have scored near the end to make it 3-1 but it came to me a bit too quick.

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“I leant back a bit too much and it went over.

“The main thing was the win, but I think that’s only the third time I’ve scored two goals in a game.

“I’ve never had a professional hat-trick.

“I feel like a new player for Burnley though, and I’m showing what I was worth.

“This game’s going to hopefully kickstart us now.”

By the time Burnley next line up at home to Middlesbrough a week on Saturday, the transfer window will have closed, and Austin hopes the club can ward off any interest in Rodriguez to continue their partnership.

The pair have scored 10 goals between them so far this season, and Austin said: “I’d like to strike up a partnership with Jay.

“I did well with Billy Paynter at Swindon and got on well with him off the pitch like I do with Jay.

“I think that helps when you come onto the pitch.

“If you’re friends you’ll do his bit of running just as much as he’ll do mine.

“Jay’s a good goalscorer and if he scores goals then I’m happy for him and hopefully he’s happy for me if it’s the other way round.

“But the game at Derby showed how tight we are as a group and what it means to the coaching staff as well as the players that we’ve won this game.”

Austin felt it was a deserved first three points of the season: “Near the end when Derby were on top we defended really strongly. Ben Mee and David Edgar – the whole back four – were a defensive rock for us.

“In the previous games we’ve been very unlucky I’d say, apart from the Palace game when we were below par, but in the other three games we’ve been unlucky not to win.

“We knew we had the belief in the team and I think that can kickstart us.

“When seven minutes went up I thought ‘oh no’. I was sat with my top over my face for the last minute.

“But we deserved the win and the three points.

“If we’d have gone into the fortnight break with a loss or a draw, we’d have still been down the bottom but with that win it pushes us up.

“We should have beat Cardiff and Watford on the opening day.

“It’s a win that we were due and it helps us.”