It’s been a baptism of fire for summer signing Charlie Taylor and the Clarets full back says that he hasn’t been able to switch off for a second.
The 24-year-old former Leeds United left back was handed his first experience of the Premier League last month when replacing the injured Stephen Ward in a 1-0 victory over Stoke City at Turf Moor.
Taylor’s first call of duty was to try and keep Swiss forward Xherdan Shaqiri quiet and he has since had to keep tabs on Anthony Knockaert, Christian Eriksen, Juan Mata and Sadio Mane in respective fixtures.
“I’m enjoying it,” he said. “Obviously it’s my first chance in the Premier League so I’m learning every day.
“It’s been a tough run of fixtures but we’ve shown that we can more than match these top sides and we’ve been unfortunate not to take more points.
“It’s the standard, the quality, the players you face. One week you’re up against Juan Mata the next it’s Sadio Mane so the level of quality is so much higher. You can’t switch off for a second.”
Raheem Sterling or Bernardo Silva could be next depending on Pep Guardiola’s rotation policy as the Clarets take on Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium in the third round of the FA Cup tomorrow.
“We’ve shown that we can more than match these teams and go toe-to-toe with the so-called ‘top six’ of the league,” said Taylor.
“It’s another tough game but you want to test yourselves against the best. It’s one that we’re more than looking forward to.
“It’s my first one with Burnley (in the FA Cup) so I’m looking for better times ahead. You want to play against the best and if we want to progress further in the competition then we have to beat the best. It’s what you want.
“There’s no point in going to a club like Manchester City with fear. We’ll enjoy it and see what happens. It might be a chance for other players to play so it should be a good cup tie.”
Taylor, who has previously spent time on loan with Bradford City and Fleetwood Town, is determined to prove that he’s worthy of keeping the shirt and he knows that it’s all down to him.
With another challenging afternoon against the Premier League’s runaway leaders ahead, Taylor said: “It’s down to the individuals. It’s up to you.
“If you play well then you’re going to put thoughts in to the gaffer’s mind and give him a decision to make. It’s all about playing well really.”
l Manchester City have lost once at home in 44 games across all competitions.