Drinkwater pleased after making injury comeback
Danny Drinkwater is targeting a place in the Burnley side after making his injury comeback for the Under-23s.
He played the full 90 minutes as Burnley reached the final four of the Lancashire Senior Cup after defeating AFC Fylde at the Barnfield Training Centre.
Drinkwater was playing in a midfield three and contributed well to the win, with goals coming from Joel Mumbongo and a brace from Joe McGlynn.
It has been an incredibly frustrating period in Drinkwater’s career, with the former Premier League title winner not yet kicking a ball in the top flight for his new club.
He joined on a half-season loan from Chelsea on deadline day but has only played once for the Clarets so far – the full 90 minutes in their 3-1 home defeat to League One Sunderland in the second round of the EFL Cup in August.
He sat on the bench in their 3-0 loss at home to Liverpool in August before suffering an ankle injury in an altercation outside a nightclub.
He has been out injured since that happened in September but is now preparing to make his way back into the side.
Speaking after the Under-23 victory, the 29-year-old admitted he was delighted to get back out on the field.
Drinkwater said: “It was nice to play the full game and get 90 minutes of competitive action under my belt.
“I need to build on that now and keep pushing up my fitness levels and see what the next few weeks bring.”
It has been a difficult period for Drinkwater, who was on a major high after helping Leicester to their shock Premier League win in the 2015-16 season.
He earned a move to Chelsea under Antonio Conte at the start of the 2017-18 season and scored once in 22 appearances.
However, under Maurizio Sarri he was completely frozen out before Frank Lampard came in and allowed him to join up with Sean Dyche’s men.
Dan McCarthy is a reporter who is very knowledgeable about football at all levels, and a keen Leeds United fan. He also follows darts, snooker, motorsport, and rugby league.