WHETHER a subliminal message or not, assistant manager Jason Tindall mentioned “confidence” or “confident” 15 times in his press briefing yesterday morning.
There has been a lot of talk about anxiety in a young Burnley side’s performances, but there were signs, certainly after the equaliser in Tuesday’s Carling Cup win over MK Dons, that confidence is returning to the players.
Andre Amougou epitomised that with his audacious overhead kick winner three minutes from time.
And Tindall said: “In football you’d probably say 70% of it is confidence. It’s something we’re lacking, we’re not quite getting the breaks we might deserve and everything seems to be going against us as well.
“We make one little mistake and we end up getting punished, and that’s the way things are going at the minute, but it’s a long season and hopefully things will balance out. All we can keep doing is working extremely hard and when we do get the confidence, with the ability we’ve got we’re capable of beating anybody, as we’ve proved before.
“I think Southampton is a great example of that. They’ve come up very confident in getting promoted last year, as Norwich were the year before, and they’ve taken that into the start of this season.
“You can see they play with a load of confidence and arrogance in a positive way and that does lead to positive results.
“When we get to that level ourselves we’ll be a difficult side to beat.”
After conceding the first goal in the opening 10 minutes of the last three games, Tindall is eager for Burnley to start tomorrow’s game against leaders Southampton as they finished on Tuesday.
He said: “We’ve been punished early in games recently and it always gives you a mountain to climb when you do that. We’re going to obviously look to eliminate that.
“It would be nice to get the first goal, and if we do that it breeds confidence among the players and breeds confidence among the fans and they get behind you.
“With the Burnley fans behind you it gives everyone a lift and it does seem to get that extra 10% out of the players. It does make a big difference so scoring the first goal is something we’d like to happen.
“I’m sure that would breed a lot of confidence with everyone.”
Tindall and boss Eddie Howe have been at a loss to explain the side’s starts in games, and he added: “You can think long and hard and come up with probably 10 different reasons but sometimes it can be the smallest of things that ends up costing you a goal, it could be an individual mistake.
“Whether you blame that on a lack of concentration or whatever it may be, it’s difficult.
“A few of our goals recently have been through individual errors and once we eliminate them we won’t be conceding the goals we are, but again that goes with confidence and mentality and as soon as we get some confidence behind us I’m sure you’ll see a difference.”
Meanwhile, he gave an update on the loan situtation: “We’re always looking. It’s probably easy for people to say why haven’t you brought this one in or that one in.
“The bottom line is you want to bring players in that are good enough to come into your team and make your team better.
“Unfortunately a lot of the good ones aren’t available and the ones that are playing in certain teams that maybe you want, those teams have got to agree to let them come. If they feel it might leave them short if they get one or two injuries then as a manager you’re not going to do that.
“It’s a difficult period. When the window closes it’s very difficult because certain clubs can’t go and bring in a replacement. We are looking and if the right one does come available that’s going to make us a better team I assure you we’ll have a very good go at signing them.”