South African striker Lyle Foster set up Burnley's opening goal as they ran out 2-0 winners against Fulham at Craven Cottage on Saturday.
Foster, who only recently returned from a spell out of action due to mental health issues, was handed a first start since October by head coach Vincent Kompany as Burnley looked to snap a three-game winless run.
Lyle Foster cut a peripheral figure for large spells of the first half and struggled to make any significant impact on the game.
Foster's only effort of the half came in the final minute when he saw his attempt blocked by an opposing defender from a counter-attacking situation.
Nonetheless, Kompany kept faith with the 23-year-old and opted against substituting him at half-time.
As the second half kicked off, Foster wasted no time in making his first contribution as he set up a Zeki Amdouni strike which just about missed the right post.
For the second time in less than a minute, Foster turned creator once more and he was not going to be denied his assist this time as Wilson Odobert unleashed a stunning curler towards the top corner after a lovely give-and-go with Forster.
Perhaps not yet up to full match fitness following his period of inactivity, Foster was taken off 20 minutes into the second period and received a standing ovation from the Burnley faithful.
Solid 65 mins for Lyle Foster against Fulham 💪🏾 grabbing an assist & looking lively 🔥 always involved in attacks & linking up well with the other forwards. I'm happy to see him back & contributing. Hopefully Burnley see this out & get the DUB! pic.twitter.com/CqM7CHAruz
— SA Football 1st 🇿🇦 (@RSAFutbol) December 23, 2023
Having scored the opener, Odobert turned provider for Burnley's second with Sander Berge sealing the deal for the Clarets to move them up into 19th place in the Premier League table.
The return of Lyle Foster hands Burnley a massive boost in the relegation survival battle
Despite playing just nine of a possible 18 league matches, Foster has assisted more goals than any other Burnley player while his three strikes see him sit joint-top with Odobert and Josh Brownhill.
Saturday's win over Fulham has seen Burnley move within four points of safety but the Lancashire-based outfit are set for a baptism of fire over the next game weeks which will see them play Liverpool, Aston Villa and Manchester City – three of the current top four.
A huge win for Burnley at Craven Cottage!
— The Athletic | Football (@TheAthleticFC) December 23, 2023
Burnley will want to avoid being left too far behind in the race for survival and they will need Lyle Foster back to his best as the Premier League season approaches its midway point.
This article was most recently revised and updated 2 months ago