Wells: I want that Premier League goal
Nahki Wells, the Burnley striker, said he is “champing at the bit” to make his Premier League debut and open his goalscoring account in the top flight.
The 27-year-old Bermuda forward has been named in the Lancashire side's squad for today's game away to Southampton and is confident that he can rise to the occasion.
“It's always good to get that trip to bond a bit more with the boys and if called upon I will be ready,” Wells told the club's website. “I feel I have what it takes to play my part. Ultimately that's what I want to do, [get] game-time in the first team.
“I'm champing at the bit. I want that Premier League debut and I want that Premier League goal.”
Wells, who was an unused substitute during Burnley's 1-0 win at home to Newcastle United on Monday, has made a steady recovery after surgery during the summer to rectify a longstanding ankle problem.
“I'm hungry and I want that opportunity to come,” said Wells, who has been playing for Burnley's under-23 side. “But, at the same time, I'm patient and I understand I've come back from an injury that requires what I've had to go through and I feel like I'm back to myself more and more as it goes on.
“For me it's important to go into the international break [next weekend] in and around the squad. I'll have another good week's training and preparation for Swansea at home and I will be totally ready.”
The former Dandy Town Hornets player reached another milestone on his way back to full match fitness by notching a first-half hat-trick in Burnley Under-23's 4-0 Premier League Cup win over Colchester United at Curzon Ashton on Thursday.
They were his first goals since joining Burnley from Huddersfield Town on transfer deadline day at the end of August and his first hat-trick since achieving the feat for Huddersfield in a League Cup win over Chesterfield in August 2014.
“Scoring goals — it's good to be back among them,” Wells said. “And a hat-trick in any shape or form is just good to recreate those memories of scoring goals at an important time.
“Most importantly, it's about getting through 90 minutes fit and getting more minutes under my belt.
“To put 90 minutes in [on Thursday] would put in question whether or not I would play any part [today], but I'm here to play for the first team and here to play my part and it's nice to be travelling.
“I've not got three 90s under my belt. I felt I performed really well in the last two and it's always good to win and get some goals.
“I'm delighted for the win and to come off fit and healthy ... I enjoyed it.
“It's a start. I had to get minutes under my belt before I get that opportunity in the first team.
“I'm hoping to impress the management staff, which was my job.”
Burnley are seventh in the Premier League table, level on points with sixth-placed Liverpool.