BURNLEY manager Sean Dyche believes his side must be better at killing teams off if they are to reach the top six after they were held to a draw by bottom club Peterborough on Saturday.
The Clarets led 1-0 at the interval after Charlie Austin netted just 60 seconds into his return from a hamstring injury, but they conceded two second-half goals and needed a late equaliser from substitute Martin Paterson to secure a draw.
Dyche was pleased with the way his side responded to fight back in the closing stages, but felt they should never have had to chase the game in the first place.
“The thing we have to improve at is that killer feel, that feel to really control a game and kill the opposition off,” said the Clarets boss.
“I think that’s our next step. Can we control a game and manage it all the way through?
“In balance we have done that well lately, barring a referee’s decision over the last five or six games we’ve done that very well. But as ever we’re greedy and hungry for more.
“We are a point closer to Middlesbrough, who lost. But it is frustrating because we felt we controlled parts of the first half.
“In the second half we didn’t really get to grips with it.
“I think the pitch hurt us a bit because when we’re going well we control the feel of the game with the ball and keep it, but it was difficult because of the bobbly surface.
“But to their credit after a really tough 25 minutes to come back and get the equaliser and have a couple of chances at the end to nick it, that’s a real positive.”
Dyche was pleased that two of his strikers got on the scoresheet.
Paterson came on in the final 15 minutes for Austin, who was making his first appearance for more than a month.
Michael Duff was also returning from a hamstring injury but limped off early in the second half.
“Hopefully that’s nothing too serious,” said the Burnley boss.
“Michael has come back from his hamstring and he was fine all week but his calf was tight so we just had to be careful with that.
“Charlie has been out four weeks and a week or maybe 10 days you can carry, but four weeks affects your match fitness. But he’s got his name on the scoresheet again, I like that bit!
“It is great when your strikers get on the scoresheet.
“Pato has been deserving of one and I’m pleased it fell for him.
“Sometimes you question yourself and have doubts but he’s been working ever so hard, coming back from a slight injury and looking sharper in training, “It was a fantastic finish from Charlie, and Vokesy affected the game as well and has done well for us recently.
“So all of a sudden we’ve got that sharpness to the top end of the pitch, which is always important.”