The wait has been worthwhile - Tarkowski

James Tarkowski has had to bide his time since signing for the Clarets but the defender says that the reward has made the wait worthwhile.

Saturday, 30th September 2017, 10:59 am
Updated Wednesday, 4th October 2017, 3:25 pm
Clarets defender James Tarkowski during the goalless draw against Huddersfield Town at Turf Moor

The 24-year-old swapped Griffin Park for Turf Moor 20 months ago with Sean Dyche's side pushing for the title in the Championship.

The former Brentford centre-back made just two starts over the course of that term, adding two substitute appearances, due to the form of impenetrable pairing Michael Keane and Ben Mee.

Tarkowski came in briefly after his England international team-mate suffered a head injury in a collision with Rotherham United goalkeeper Lee Camp but was once again restricted to appearances from the bench on Keane's return.

And it was a similar sequence of showings for Tarkowski last season with Burnley's bond at the back as good as it has ever been.

The Oldham-born defender made just four starts in the Premier League at the back end of the campaign in games against Crystal Palace, West Brom, AFC Bournemouth and West Ham.

Tomorrow, when the Clarets take on Everton at Goodison Park, looking to extend their unbeaten record on the road, Tarkowski may be reunited with the man responsible for keeping him out of the XI for that extended period.

"It feels like it's been worth the wait now," he said. "When I joined I was frustrated and wanted to play, I’ve stuck it out and now I’ve got the chance.

"Keano’s a good lad. We worked together a lot and against each other. He deserves everything he’s got and his England caps."

Burnley's early away fixtures looked daunting on paper - with the first five all against the top flight's European representatives - but they've stood up to the challenge so far.

Now they'll look to add to the performances and points from Stamford Bridge, Wembley and Anfield.

With the midweek draw against Europa League opponents Apollon Limassol cranking up the pressure on Toffees boss Ronald Koeman, Tarkowski said: "We always knew with the fixtures we had that we had a tough start, especially away from home, but so far we’ve stood up to it and picked up some good points.

"It’s another chance to go away from home and pick up some more points. There’s a lot of talk about them not doing so well at the moment but they’re still a good side.

"It might work out better for us they’ve played midweek. They played on Thursday in a tough game so it might work in our favour.

"But we’ve got to go there fully at it. It will be another tough game. If we’re not at the level we need to be it it won’t matter whether they’re at it or not.

"We need to be on it from the word go which so far away from home we have been."