Clarets won't take risks on Pato
JASON Tindall insists Burnley will never take a risk on Martin Paterson’s fitness – after admitting the striker’s explosiveness means he has to be handled carefully.
The Clarets front man was a surprising absence from Tuesday night’s defeat at Middlesbrough, sparking fitness fears among supporters for a player who has endured an injury nightmare.
The 25-year-old though is expec-ted to come back into contention for this afternoon’s trip to Huddersfield Town as Burnley’s assistant manager revealed his withdrawal was precautionary.
Tindall said: “We made the decision purely based on how he felt within his leg.
“The physios assess him and have a big say in how he’s feeling and what’s going on, and Pato himself – you know your own body yourself and sometimes you know when things aren’t quite right.
“The last thing we wanted to do was to take a risk and potentially lose him for anything up to six weeks. We certainly can’t afford to do that and we didn’t want to do that.
“We’ll include Pato when he’s right and when he’s 100 per cent fit, knowing himself mentally and us knowing he’s right, and hopefully then there shouldn’t be any problems.”
Paterson missed much of the last Championship campaign suffering from thigh and hamstring problems, having been forced out of Burnley’s Premier League season with a knee injury.
His return to the squad would give boss Eddie Howe good options ahead of the trip to Yorkshire, with Charlie Austin making a prolific start to the campaign and Sam Vokes signing from Wolves in the summer, although the Clarets boss remains keen to add another striker before the end of the transfer window.
Paterson though is seen a key player for Burnley’s promotion push, with Tindall praising the striker’s high work load.
The assistant boss said: “Pato’s like an Olympic sprinter in some senses – all his work is explosive.
“When you see the way he plays he doesn’t stop working and doesn’t stop sprinting.
“If you’ve got a muscle problem and you’re working with that kind of high intensity you can’t really take any risks.
“We did the right thing and we’ll bring him back at the right time.”
The Clarets, who follow up this afternoon’s trip with a Capital One cup tie at home to Plymouth on Tuesday, will also be boosted now by funds from Wolves as a result of their sell-on clause for former striker Steven Fletcher.
Fletcher yesterday completed his move to Sunderland, with Burnley due 15 per cent of the profit made by Wolves after selling him to the West Midlands club for £7m two years ago.
The reported fee of around £14m paid by Sunderland would give the Clarets in the region of £1.05m – funds that will help in their desire to strengthen their squad further before the closure of the transfer window on Friday.