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Howe's praise for victorious Burnley
EDDIE Howe praised a “huge effort” as his battling Burnley side did the double over play-off chasing Brighton.
Charlie Austin's 23rd-minute goal proved enough to separate the teams, after the Clarets dug in under pressure in the second half to secure their second win in three games.
The Seagulls were out for revenge for their December defeat to Burnley, in which they played almost 80 minutes with nine men.
And the re-match threatened to boil over again as frustrated Brighton, facing a dent to their top six bid, turned bad-tempered late on.
But Howe's men kept their cool to see the game out, and the manager said: “It was a huge effort against a really good side.
“You can see the bodies we've got fit and available and we're down to the bare bones.
“I thought the lads that were fit gave absolutely everything to the cause. I thought they were outstanding, with people playing out of position as well and people playing with injuries.
“We gave a lot of energy in the first half trying to press them and stop them playing their normal game – I thought we did that really well.
“We put a lot of balls in their box which we were pleased about, scored a good goal. We did fear second half that they would keep the ball and have the majority of the play, but it brought out the best in our back four.
“Ross (Wallace), at left back, I thought was excellent. The two centre halves headed everything. We limited them to half chances and did really towards the end of the game. We found a second wind and could have hit them on the break a couple of times.”
Howe, who kept faith with goalkeeper Lee Grant following an error for the final goal in a 3-1 defeat to Birmingham City on Tuesday, added: “Granty's a very good goalkeeper. I think he's had a good season.
“He's made one or two mistakes but who doesn't in life? I certainly do. It happens, you've just got to learn from it and move on.
“I don't think he had a great deal to do (against Brighton) and that's testament to the lads in front of him and the midfield four who were excellent.
“It starts from the front two and their work-rate. Danny Ings in the 94th minute was chasing the keeper and the centre halves, as he had all day. I thought Charlie and Danny were outstanding.”
With Jay Rodriguez (groin) and Ben Mee (back fracture) ruled out for Monday's trip to Doncaster and Martin Paterson awaiting the results of a scan, the dilemma now facing Howe is who will be available for their second Easter game.
Marvin Bartley went off with a hamstring problem on the half-hour and Kieran Trippier and Austin were among a number of players who took heavy knocks.
“I'm just worried about trying to pick a team for Monday,” Howe admitted.
“I don't really want to think about it.
“We'll see who's fit. There may be one or two that aren't.
“But that's what the youth team's there for and that's why we're delighted to call them up and train with us.
“Steve (Hewitt) made his debut, which is great for the future of the club, and we'll see if we can get a few more involved.
“The only reason Cameron Howieson wasn't involved is because he had been ill.”
Of Hewitt, Howe added: “I thought he did really well. In a fiery atmosphere he was really composed. The few times that the ball fell to him we all wanted him to hook it on and he had a touch and played it to a full back, so that's good signs for him.”