IT didn’t take long after Saturday’s convincing 3-0 opening day win over Southampton for the excuses to start flowing.

It was too windy, we were too direct, it was rubbish football.

I never had the Saints fans down as a bitter bunch but that the result seems to have brought out the worst in them.

The game was a bit of a non-event in the first half and the visitors did have probably have the best of the chances with Nick Pope – back in the middle of our goal after the sale of Tom Heaton – producing a superb stop to deny Nathan Redmond.

But in the second half, Southampton just collapsed and we took full advantage.

Ashley Barnes helped himself to a couple of goals to get his season off to a cracking start.

The first he capitalised on Jannik Vestergaard somehow misreading the flight of an Erik Pieter’s ball forward, before smashing the ball past Angus Gunn with a finish which actually gets better every time you see it.

Pieters was involved for the second, this time sticking in an inch-perfect cross for Barnes to steer past Gunn to double his and the Clarets’ tally.

Johann Berg Gudmundsson added a third to cap a remarkable turnaround and leave Saints boss Ralph Hasenhuttl scratching his head as to what had gone wrong for his side.

Saturday also saw our first Premier League involvement in VAR and, while this might not be the most popular opinion, I actually didn’t think it worked too bad.

It ruled out a goal – correctly – for offside, decided Che Adams didn’t deserve a red card for a challenge on Ben Mee and gave the green light to the Clarets’ third goal after, again correctly, confirming there was no foul by JBG on Ryan Bertrand in the build-up.

I think the Evans challenge on Mee was probably an orange card but because the ref hadn’t spotted it, he escaped without so much as a yellow. Apparently, VAR is only checking for red cards.

I think had Graham Scott seen the foul, the Saints debutant might have been in trouble.

It was rash and quite high but I’m not sure it was any worse than Barnes on Matic that time when Jose Mourinho got all worked up.

The VAR system could, of course, be quicker but with three points, three goals and clean sheet from our opening fixture of the new season, I doubt any Claret leaving the Turf cared less.