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Howe: Red hot Turf is crucial to our success
EDDIE Howe described Saturday’s derby atmosphere as “red hot” and wants to keep the home fires burning all season.
Burnley fans pumped up the volume throughout the 2-0 win over Bolton Wanderers in the league opener on Saturday.
And Howe hopes they can sustain that level of noise, as well as the level of performance, as they bid to repair the Turf Moor fortress that was weakened last term by nine draws and seven defeats in the Championship.
The Clarets boss was pleased to get off to the perfect start in their restoration job, thanks to goals from strike duo Martin Paterson and Charlie Austin in either half.
“Our home form last year was disappointing so hopefully that will go some way to putting that right and giving the lads confidence and actually looking forward and enjoying playing at home because they should be really.
"It should be their favourite place to play and hopefully we can start to create that this season,” said Howe, who gave league debuts to two of his three summer defensive signings, with new captain Jason Shackell and left back Joseph Mills starting in the back four.
“Defensively was an area we felt we needed to improve from last year.
“I think everyone looks back to last year and could see at times we would wobble but I didn’t think we did that (on Saturday).
“Bolton had a bit of late pressure but you would expect that. But our decision making to see the game out was very good – much improved – and showed a bit of maturity.
“The lads were outstanding from start to finish.
“I thought there were some gigantic performances from individuals – some great debuts – and I thought we looked like a good side.
“It’s only one game so we can’t get carried away, but it’s certainly a good performance and hopefully it will give the lads a lot of confidence.”
For the fans, Howe hoped the result would also offer an element of closure in their campaign against Coyle.
“You have to understand the situation in terms of Owen was such a popular manager and did such a good job, and when you leave a club after doing a job like that there’s always going to be some sort of hurt from the supporters and I think you can understand that,” said Howe “We knew the occasion – opening day and Bolton, the two go hand in hand. It (the atmosphere) was red hot, but I really enjoyed it.
“It was great. Fantastic. I just wish we could play in front of that every week.”
He added: “I was pleased for them (the fans). It means a lot and we’re fully aware of that, how much it means to the supporters – and not just this game.
“As I said before the game it’s the first day of the season, we want to start off in good form.”
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