After his 24 goal haul last season and months of speculation, Charlie Austin left Burnley to move down south to Queens Park Rangers for 4 million in August 2013. While the former bricklayer would just be another addition to Rangers frontline, for Burnley it left a gaping hole in their attacking weaponry, step forward, Danny Ings.
Ings notched up his 10th goal of the season on Saturday with a timely equaliser to give high-flying Burnley another point in their promotion battle, a battle that they can certainly thank their strike-force for. But it hasn’t been all rosy for the 21 year old at Turfmoor. A week after joining the club in August 2011 for one million pounds, he suffered a knee cartilage tear and was ruled out for five months. On his return he found himself on the bench, largely thanks to the form of Jay Rodriguez, now at Southampton. Ings managed just three goals in the campaign.
The following season saw the sale of Rodriguez, and Ings began pre-season in fine form. But in the final warm-up match he devastatingly tore the knee cartilage in his other knee which resulted in surgery. The forward would miss six months. Again his return was stifled by another in-form striker, this time Austin. Ings was mainly a substitute for the most part of the season, and again ended the season with just three league goals to his name.
With Charlie Austin now departed and Martin Paterson rejecting a new contract at the Turf, Burnley were lacking up top but manager Sean Dyche decided not to bring in re-enforcements. Instead he decided to use Danny Ings along with Sam Vokes who had also been second choice the previous campaign. The pairing has been fruitful in front of goal with ten goals for Ings and nine for Vokes. Ings has also received an England Under 21 call up this year.
According to Burnley fan Joel Brown, however, although he has the potential, he’s not quite ready for the step up to the Premier League just yet, “Ings is sometimes left kicking himself knowing his finishing may have let him down, his success is down to the formidable partnership forged between him and Sam Vokes”. But at 21 years of age, the former Bournemouth marksman has plenty of time to improve. Joel adds, “He’s got quick feet and gives his all. He’s never sulking if service is slow and is always looking to get involved”.
With Burnley top of the league, they will be hoping Ings can keep up his goalscoring exploits throughout the season. While we’re sure he will, there’s a few fans that still might question his injury problems, but for Danny Ings, this season been a long time coming.