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Clarets Blog: Clarets have a better record than Barcelona in 2013
It is not often you can say this but Barcelona have lost more league games than Burnley in 2013.
I know, I know, it is a pretty lame stat, be it as we are only 21 days into the new year but it still has a nice ring to it.
What sounds even better is that Saturday’s deserved 2-0 win over Millwall at the New Den was our third win from three in the Championship in 2013.
And it has lifted us to seventh in the table, four points off the play-offs.
There were signs before Christmas that we were becoming a team that is hard to beat but we were failing to turn some dominant performances into wins.
Now, the wins again Sheffield Wednesday, Crystal Palace and now Millwall have seen us step up to the next level.
We haven’t conceded in those three matches and even someone who isn’t that familiar with football will be able to work out that if you don’t concede then you don’t lose matches.
Millwall have had a decent season and I was impressed with some of their play when they came to the Turf earlier in the season.
A trip to the New Den isn’t easy and we don’t always have the best of days in that part of the capital.
But, such is the belief at the moment, I did think we would get something out of the game.
Goals for Sam Vokes and Danny Ings, both from close range and both from decent balls into the box, was enough to hand us the three points.
It was great to see big Sam Vokes on the scoresheet because he really should have had a hat-trick against Crystal Palace but failed to take any of his chances.
That kind of thing can affect strikers but Sam will take a lot of confidence not only from his goal on Saturday but also from his run in the side.
Ings is just getting better and better for me and if Charlie Austin is to leave us in the next week or so – which is looking less likely now due to the fact he’s out injured – I’d be confident that we’d cope.
Heck, we’ve won three games on the spin in the league without him (not that I’m not hoping for a speedy return from Charlie!).
Defensively, even the absence of Michael Duff didn’t disrupt things too much and David Edgar was again called upon to deputise for one of his teammates, this time in his more comfortable centre back position.
I think the defensive improvements are the most pleasing aspect of the last couple of months for me.
I still think we could improve (which sounds ridiculous I know given the fact we’ve got four clean sheets from five games) but the same could be said of so many sides.
Consistency is going to be the key now and if we can keep up this run that we’re on then the top six should be our minimum target.
There are still teams in the play-off zones that lack consistency and there are always a couple of teams who make a post-Christmas charge for the end of season lottery.
We’ve done it before and I see no reason why we can’t do it again.
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