AT around 4.20pm on Saturday afternoon, I forgot about the relentless rain battering against my face and jumped deliriously around the James Hargreaves stand.

For Sir Ashley of Barnes had just fired an absolute screamer past Angus Gunn to send the Clarets on their way to their first win of the season. At the first time of asking.

What followed was a 12-minute spell of slick passing, attacking intent and clinical finishing. Fans would be forgiven for any surprise that it was Barnes who got the brace - this was our only striker who hadn’t scored in pre-season, with both Chris Wood and Jay Rodriguez looking sharp.

But this is our Ashley, and things that affect other people don’t affect him. Over the years, we have seen Barnes develop from a clumsy, unsophisticated Championship squad player to one of the most lethal strikers the Premier League has.

He has taken all of the headlines this week. And I couldn’t be prouder.

I did wonder whether Saturday’s game would be gate-crashed by our new VAR guest.

I wasn’t particularly impressed with its global debut at the Women’s World Cup over the summer, and was prepared for long delays, a break up in the flow of the game, referees losing their confidence to make a decision and general uncertainty all round.

I was therefore pleasantly surprised at how little VAR affected the flow of the game and how slick the whole operation had been.

I question whether it was needed for the first goal, given that everyone in the ground could see it was offside and the linesman had already flagged, but we are told that these blips will be ironed out over time. Was anyone else really excited when the game paused for a ‘red card review’ against Che Adams?

There was certainly a ripple of “ooohhh” at my end of the stand.

The real test for VAR this season will be at the weekend, as the Clarets meet their new Premier League nemesis; Arsenal. If there was ever a fixture that desperately needed VAR, then this is it.

How many points have we been unjustly robbed of over the last four years, at the hands of the Gunners?

Regardless of what happens this season, if VAR can stop the offside, handball goals five minutes after added time is up then it gets a thumbs up from me.

The Clarets look good. And VAR has levelled the playing field. Don’t be surprised if we’re looking at six points from six come Sunday morning for the mighty Clarets!