Peterborough United's Harrison Burrows describes left back as 'the hardest position I've played' but praises increased belief of teammates at set pieces

Peterborough United’s Harrison Burrows has described left back at the hardest position he has played this season.

By Ben Jones
Friday, 22nd April 2022, 12:19 pm
Harrison Burrows played at left back in Posh's 1-1 draw at Bristol City earlier this month.
Harrison Burrows played at left back in Posh's 1-1 draw at Bristol City earlier this month.

The 20-year-old product of the youth academy has become one of the first names on the teamsheet for Posh in recent weeks, mostly lining up in the left wingback position.

He has been called into action in that position given the long-term injury suffered by Dan Butler and Joe Tomlinson’s loan to Swindon. While it is unlikely Burrows’ future lies in that role, he has worked hard to improve his defensive game and it has given him the opportunity to showcase his crossing ability.

His assist on Monday (April 18) was his fifth of the season, taking him two clear of anyone else in the squad and he has also weighed in with three goals.

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Burrows has appeared in 34 league matches this season, 37 in all competitions and has been used in a variety of positions, including left back, left wingback, left wing, right wing as well as a number ten.

He played as a left back against Bristol City for the first time this month, a position that although he has said he enjoyed, one he found the most unnatural.

He said: I feel I’m getting more experienced with every game I play. I didn’t expect to be playing this many games in the Championship and I’m not one to take if for granted.

“For me as a player, I base my game off my stats and if I don’t get a goal or an assist, I don’t feel like I’ve contributed that much. Even at wing back, considering how attacking the gaffer plays, I want to put myself in positions to score goals and deliver crosses.

“I have played in numerous positions this season but I have enjoyed all of them. They each have their own challenges but I’d say the hardest I’ve played is left back because I’ve never played there and defending one-on-one is a side of my game I am not used to. Playing there will only make me better though.

“The quality of wingers you are playing against is so much higher than in League One, their movement is excellent and you have to keep your concentration throughout the whole game. That one time you lose focus, they will get in behind you and a goal will come from it.

“A lot of teams play three at the back and it’s a one vs one battle, wingback vs wingback, playing cat and mouse and pinning them back as much as you can. I enjoy attacking but I have to focus a lot more on my defensive duties.”

Burrows has also stepped up to set piece duty, something which Posh have lagged behind the rest of the division this season, both in terms of attacking and defending them.

Posh have conceded 14 goals from set pieces this season, the fifth most in the division. They have only scored twice from corners this season, with one of these being a Jack Taylor thunderbolt from the edge of the box when the ball was passed to him straight from a corner and the second being a Jack Taylor header last time out.

Burrows has asserted though that this is an area the team are working hard on and where there has been some improvement.

He added: “There’s a bit more belief and when I’m delivering the ball into the box, there is a lot more aggression and fight to want to go and win a header and that is something we have worked very hard on and now it’s starting to pay off slowly.

"It’s not just the goal on Monday, you can tell we look more dangerous from set pieces in recent weeks.

"Crossing is a big part of my part of my game and I think you saw last year, whenever I put the ball into the box Jonno would get his head to it because his heading ability is fantastic.

"I think we do have that chemistry. When I get the ball out wide, he knows every time that I am looking for him. In League One it worked a lot and in the Championship it has shown glimpses and I’m really pleased with that.”