James Tarkowski believes a good pre-season is the reason for the Clarets' confident start to the Premier League season.

The centre back, who again missed out on a call-up to Gareth Southgate’s England squad for the forthcoming Euro 2020 qualifiers, was a rock alongside Ben Mee as the Clarets saw off 10-man Everton on Saturday.

The win moved the Burnley onto 12 points – the same amount they had on the board after they were thrashed 5-1 at home to the Toffees on Boxing Day last year.

The Clarets were languishing in 18th in the Premier League table after that defeat.

And Tarkowski said: “It was one of the toughest days I've had at Burnley in terms of performances and the way the result went against us.

“Since then we've performed quite consistently and picked up some very good points. The difference in performance from that day to today is massive.

“Fair play to the lads because that was a difficult period for us and to come out of that and turn it around like we have has been really good.

“It all stemmed from a good pre-season. Everybody came back in great shape and the competition throughout the squad is brilliant.

“You can see that with the lads coming into the team who haven't started the season; I thought Chaz [Charlie Taylor] was brilliant when he came on.

“To come on after 50 minutes and play the way he did, fair play to him. He worked hard and it can be tough at times being out of the team and then coming in. As a whole squad we're really trying to push each other and move forward. The league table shows how well we've done so far.”

Key to the Clarets stability this time out has been the consistency of the performances of the backline.

They have three clean sheets from four home league games this term and Tarkowski and defensive partner Mee have been picking up frequent man of the match nominations for their performances.

The Mee-Tarkowski partnership is well-developed and Tarkowski says the pair enjoy playing alongside each other.

He said: “We've had a good partnership for some time now, I think this is our third season together. We're really enjoying it.

“As a back four or five we seem to be defending really well. You're going to concede goals at times, but if we generally feel secure and we're not giving away too many chances we'll be quite pleased.”