Vydra’s the baby-faced assassin
BEING A DAD EASED CLARETS STAR’S PAIN WHEN HE WAS OUT OF THE SIDE
IT was just a few weeks ago that the only games Matej Vydra got to play in were with his baby daughter.
Now, the Burnley striker has his sights set on helping the Clarets stay in the Premier League and winning a place in the Czech Republic squad that will face England in this summer’s Euros.
Vydra’s three years at Turf Moor have largely been spent on the bench.
But when Ashley Barnes pulled a thigh muscle in the draw with Fulham in February, it gave him the opportunity to show what he can do.
He said: “I waited so long for my chance and now I have played six games on the bounce, so I am enjoying it, doing my best to score as many goals as I can to hopefully be ready for the Euros.
“Everyone knows I want to play every single game, but that doesn’t happen.
“I haven’t been the nicest guy when I go home, but I can’t complain now.
“I can’t be too frustrated because I have a 15-monthold daughter, Vanessa.
“I need to play with her and look after her, but right now my focus is to play my best football for Burnley and my second target is to get in the Euros with the Czech Republic.
“No.1 has to make sure that I am playing for Burnley in the Premier
League again next season.” Burnley can go a long way to securing their top-flight status when they host Newcastle at Turf Moor today.
Vydra, 28, scored a stunner to put Sean Dyche’s side 2-0 up at Southampton last Sunday, only for the Saints to produce a victorious fightback that leaves the Clarets still looking over their shoulders.
The striker was used as a substitute when the Czech Republic beat Estonia, drew with Belgium and lost to Wales in their recent World Cup qualifiers.
But his mind is now on taking three points from relegation-threatened Toon – and he knows how precious they would be.
He added: “Losing to Southampton was disappointing, especially as we played so well in the first 30 minutes.
“We created chances, scored two goals and still lost 3-2 – but this is another day and another game.
“Personally I feel like we are favourites.
“But it will be a tough game and a huge game for both teams because in these last eight games every side will be fighting for every single point.
“This game is really for six points because if we win we will have three more points and they have one less game to catch us.
“Hopefully, we will play like we did in the first 30 minutes at Southampton.”