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Barton determined to repay Dyche for pulling him out of 'circus'

6:22 AM GMT+8 15/01/2017
Joey Barton Burnley
The match-winning midfielder vowed to reward 'unique club' Burnley after scoring on his Premier League debut for the Clarets against Southampton

Joey Barton spoke of his desire to repay Burnley boss Sean Dyche after scoring the winner against Southampton.

Dyche sent Barton on as a second-half substitute to make his second league debut for the Clarets on Saturday, having returned to the club last month after an ill-fated and controversial spell with Rangers.

He made an impact within five minutes  - scoring from a free-kick to snatch his side a 1-0 win.

Barton bags points for Burnley

The appearance was Barton's first in the Premier League for Burnley, after he had played a pivotal role in helping them into the top-flight in his first spell at Turf Moor, and the 34-year-old paid tribute to Dyche afterwards for welcoming him back with open arms.

Barton said: "This club has invested a lot in me, and for Sean to do what he did in light of the circus around me is an incredible thing.

"Hopefully we can keep doing this week in, week out and repay that faith.

"It's a real privilege to be part of this group."

Barton's introduction lifted a Burnley performance that had been badly lacking in attacking intent to that point, and he said that his only aim when taking the free-kick was to make Southampton goalkeeper Fraser Forster work.

He added: "I moved Jeff Hendrick into the wall a bit. You've got to work a goalkeeper of Fraser Forster's quality.

"It wasn't the cleanest free-kick I've ever hit but it was very meaningful.

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"It means a lot to me to come back to Turf Moor and do that. It's incredibly special."

Barton was an instrumental figure in Burnley's promotion-winning side of 2015-16, and he feels the club has progressed during his absence.

He said: "There have been additions to the squad, and the lads who have come in have added to what is an incredible collective.

"It's a unique club and a unique group of people, and I'm very fortunate to come back and be part of this again."