Stephen Cummings: Reaction says everything about Clarets
It speaks volumes about the season that Burnley are currently enjoying, that picking up a point after trailing at Bournemouth is somehow seen as a slightly disappointing result.
Yet there’s no reason why that should be the case. Keith Treacy’s opportunist strike in the 67th minute at the Cherries’ Goldsands Stadium grabbed Sean Dyche’s men a share of the spoils and made sure Burnley ended the weekend still in the automatic promotion slots.
Indeed, it seems more than a little churlish to try and take issue with a week which brought a four point return.
The bulk of those points came a week ago tonight, against a Bolton Wanderers side for whom the adjective “embattled” may well have been invented.
The manager has often stressed that it is important to be able to win football matches in different ways.
And last Tuesday night you could see exactly what he meant.
At the Reebok Stadium, Burnley were not allowed to replicate the pass and move game which saw them comprehensively dismantle a poor Millwall outfit a few days earlier.
This was a game which called for resilient defending, patience and – crucially – a large dollop of self-belief.
A lot of sides would have dug in and settled for a point; respectable enough in a local derby.
But the notion of compromise doesn’t seem to be in this team’s vocabulary.
So whereas Queens Park Rangers laboured to defeat at Derby 24 hours previously, the Clarets and Sam Vokes kept going and delivered the goods.
Who knows how important that might prove come season’s end?
That resilience was again in evidence on the south coast.
Burnley’s performance was below par and yet they still managed to come away from Dorset with something to show for their efforts – and that was the important thing.
If you can’t win then at least make sure you don’t lose is one of the oldest and most worn maxims in football, yet on Saturday it was perfectly apt.
Meanwhile, the next couple of weekends offer what might reasonably be described as stiff challenges, as Burnley lock horns with Nottingham Forest and Derby County on consecutive Saturdays at Turf Moor.
It’s easy to see these games as daunting.
But it’s also worth bearing in mind that every time a challenge has been presented to this group of players, they have risen to it. Who’s to say it will be any different when Forest and Derby pitch up?