Penalty king Tom – ‘Let’s kick on!’

BIG MOMENT: Tom Heaton saves Johnny Russell's penalty kick with the Clarets 2-0 up at Derby on Saturday
BIG MOMENT: Tom Heaton saves Johnny Russell's penalty kick with the Clarets 2-0 up at Derby on Saturday

Keeper Tom Heaton has urged his teammates to kick on from their impressive start to the season - starting in the derby.

Burnley have won five of their first seven games in all competitions, going into the international break third in the table, and in third round of the Capital One Cup.

And Heaton, restored to the side after suspension in midweek against Preston, hopes to take full advantage of that position: “It always feels like a long time in between now and the next game so when you can come out 3-0 winners it really does give you a positive feeling.

“But it’s important you use that positive feeling and not take our foot off the gas for one minute.

“It’s about progress. The manager keeps drumming that into us and I think he’s dead right.

“We’ve set the bar high this season but we keep wanting to raise it so we’ll certainly be trying to do that in this international break and take that into the Blackburn game.”

Heaton knows all about the rivalry with Rovers through his family of Clarets fans, and he added: “From the moment I set foot through the Burnley door this game’s been mentioned so I’m really looking forward to it.

“We’ve started this season really well, there’s a great atmosphere around the place and we’ll certainly be going all out to get the three points and we’re confident of doing that.”

The former Cardiff man was at the centre of controversy at Brighton last week, sent off for a second yellow card, having been deemed to have handled the ball twice, despite former Rochdale teammate Will Buckley admitting he had touched the ball inbetween.

And he mused: “I felt it was a harsh red card last week, I’ve got to be honest, but sometimes these things get thrown at you.

“At the time I felt we were still in the game, so it was disappointing.

“But watching from the sidelines in midweek I thought we handled it really well.

“We came back with a performance against Preston.

“It wasn’t vintage stuff all the time but we hung in there and it’s been a bit of a factor throughout this season that we can defend well in games, be tough to play against even when we’re not on top form and if we can keep doing that it’s going to stand us in good stead.”