The Burnley manager Owen Coyle will continue to play exciting football as he targets Premier League safety and cup success.
Having won two of their first three league games – against Manchester United and Everton – the Clarets edged through to the third round of the Carling Cup on Tuesday night after surviving a major scare at Hartlepool. They eventually prevailed 2-1 after extra time courtesy of substitute Steven Fletcher's late double as Coyle used the full depth of his squad.
But although Burnley were pushed all the way by the League One outfit, the Scot was delighted with some of the football they played, and particularly by the performance of 19-year-old Ecuadorian winger Fernando Guerrero.
The teenager, a former Real Madrid Under-19 player on loan at Turf Moor from Independiente del Valle, had previously been restricted to two appearances as a substitute, but he made an impact in his first start and proved a threat throughout.
Coyle said: "Without singling out individuals, when you look at young Guerrero at 19 years of age, for me he was worth the admission money alone. His performance was a throwback to old-fashioned wingers, which I love. He is positive, he looks to take people on and that's what we are trying to do. We are trying to win games, but equally, we are trying to be entertaining and exciting at the same time."
Guerrero was one of 10 men to be given a chance to show what they could do at Victoria Park after Coyle opted to rest the bulk of his first-choice men with a trip to high-flying Chelsea to come on Saturday. He ultimately had to turn to Fletcher, Robbie Blake and Martin Paterson with Pool leading 1-0 through Adam Boyd's 39th-minute strike, and it was not until six minutes from time that £3m man Fletcher equalised. The winner came 18 minutes into extra-time and after full-back Richard Eckersley had been sent off for a second bookable offence, Fletcher powering home a header from Paterson's cross.
It proved a tough evening in the North-east for Coyle and his players, but the manager left taking plenty of positives from 120 minutes of football which he felt demonstrated both the resilience and depth of his squad.
He said: "They are good players – that's why they are at the football club – and apart from the ability they have, they have an unbelievable work ethic and a desire to win football matches, and that was epitomised last night. It would be easy at 1-0 down to feel sorry for yourself given the changes we made – that group probably hadn't played together. But all they know is to try to win games and keep positive."Reuse content