AFTER two months out with an ankle injury, Danny Fox’s return to the side has coincided with Burnley keeping clean sheets.
Fox came back for the 4-2 FA Cup win over Port Vale, before helping shut out both leaders QPR, and struggling Scunthorpe, and feels the two goal-less draws are something to build on.
But he accepts the draws have to be turned into wins, sooner rather than later, to mount a play-off challenge.
The former Celtic man said after the game at Glanford Park: “I thought it was an ultimate professional performance to be honest.
“In the last two games, against QPR and at Scunthorpe, I think we’ve looked a lot more solid as a unit, and a lot more organised.
“It all starts with Jay Rodriguez up front. He worked really hard, and held the ball up brilliantly for us, then we could get up the pitch.
“It’s another clean sheet, and I don’t think we’ve done that back-to-back all season.
“It’s a positive result, but I think we feel a bit down that we never got the three points with Jay’s chance in the last 20 minutes.
“You take a point away from home, but we need to start turning those draws into wins – especially at home like last week.”
Everyone was looking for pointers as to what changes new boss Eddie Howe would implement, and Fox gave an inside insight: “It’s been good, we’ve really enjoyed it.
“Training’s been really intense, and I think that showed because everyone put a good shift in.
“The gaffer reiterated that after the game.
“Everyone did their fair share, and I think we deserved to win, but getting the clean sheet is a positive as well.
“With the work ethic, the gaffer tells us to press them as high up the pitch as we can, and I think we did that.
“Jay, Chris Eagles and Ross Wallace all set the tone for the game by pressing the full-backs, and it allowed the back four to get up as well.
“Andre Bikey and Chris Iwelumo came on – it’s not just the starting 11 that gets the result – Andre was brilliant when he came on and Chris Iwelumo had two great chances as well.”
And Fox spoke of Howe’s impact in training and around the club so far: “He’s quite reserved. Once he starts getting to know the lads, and the way we play, I think he’ll start to come out of his shell in certain ways. But he’s gained immediate respect from everyone with the way he is, and the style he goes about things.
“I think the first few days he took a step back, and Stu (Stuart Gray) took a large part of the sessions.
“He’s starting to stamp his authority on the team.
“I think he showed that with the changes he made, and it paid dividends.
“He’s quite thorough in his ideas as well.I think the longer he’s in charge the more he’ll put his stamp on the team and you’ll see a big difference.
“He’s a bit more in touch in terms of knowing what players want.
“He only finished playing a couple of years ago, and I think he’ll understand when the lads need a rest.”