Oli McBurnie: Striker says Swansea must show same spirit as last season

Swansea's Oli McBurnie tussles with Emre Can of Liverpool
Oli McBurnie (right) has had loan spells at Newport County and Bristol Rovers during his time at Swansea City

Young Swansea City striker Oli McBurnie insists he and his team-mates must take heart from the Welsh club's escape from relegation last season.

The 21-year-old made his first Premier League start in the Boxing Day 5-0 battering by Liverpool at Anfield.

McBurnie said the rock-bottom Swans, who face Watford on Saturday, must now take hope from the last campaign.

"We were in a similar position last year and we managed to get out of it," said McBurnie.

Last season it was Paul Clement who rode to the Swans' rescue when they were in the drop zone.

But Clement was sacked last week and club icon Leon Britton is in temporary charge while the Swansea board looks to appoint the club's fifth manager in two years.

McBurnie, who signed for Swansea from Bradford in July 2015, said it was down to the Swansea players to look within themselves and find the same character they did last season.

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"We've got a squad virtually identical to the one which got out of it last year," McBurnie told BBC Sport Wales.

"It's down to the boys now, we can't look anywhere else, we've got to do it. We have to find it within ourselves. There's enough quality in that dressing room. It's about building our confidence back up.

"There is hope still, the moment we give up on that there's no point in us turning up. We need to believe in ourselves and we need the fans to get behind us and believe in us too. We know we can do it."

Pride, but disappointment too

The Swans need to lift themselves now for the trip to Vicarage Road on Saturday to face Watford.

McBurnie said, even with the campaign barely half done, the game with the Hornets was already significant.

"We've got a massive game now against Watford and we've got to go out there and make sure we get three points. It's a massive game for us," he said.

On the personal front McBurnie said making his first top-flight start had been a proud moment, but that the defeat at the hands of Liverpool had very much taken the gloss off things.

The Scotland Under-21 international added: "It was obviously a very proud moment for me and my family, but the overriding emotion is one of disappointment. It was a hard one to take for the boys."

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