Luke Burke on the attack and aiming for first AFC Fylde goal
Fylde full-back Luke Burke feels he has added to his attacking threat this season - and he hopes that may result in his first professional goal.
A regular starter in his second season at the club, Burke said: “I did score in a pre-season friendly for Wigan but I haven’t yet scored, no.
“I’d like to get amongst the goals, even if it’s just one.
“I tend to get myself in positions up the pitch but I’d rather cross, set someone up and get the assist, especially with Rowey (Danny Rowe) in the team.
“You know there is a huge chance that something will happen when he has the ball.”
Having come through the academy at Wigan, Burke made eight senior appearances for Latics and three on loan at Barrow, who Fylde play twice over the festive period, before joining the Coasters on loan in August last year.
Having played 33 times for Fylde last season, he has made 17 National League appearances this term despite seven weeks on the sidelines in September and October with a hamstring injury.
That first goal remains elusive but Burke is pleased with his progress, having signed a two-year deal in the summer.
He explained: “I feel like I’m more attacking this year and I’m covering more ground, as the GPS stats show, and overall progressing really well.
“I do work on crossing too. I stay out after training with Arlen Birch and Dan Gray to do extra work. It really helps.
“This season I had a good run of games before I got a hamstring injury, which halted progress a bit, but I feel like each season I’m getting fitter and getting stronger, and I keep adding things to my game.”
Having stepped down from the EFL, Burke has been impressed by standards in the National League and added: “Everyone thinks this league isn’t a good standard, but you get players dropping down from the EFL to teams like Salford and Leyton Orient.
“Money is a big part of this league and you come up against top players as a result.”
Burke is refreshed for Saturday’s final home game of 2018 against Ebbsfleet United after sitting out the FA Trophy win over Stratford Town last weekend.
He would love to see Fylde continue their progress in the non-league cup competition and added: “Wembley would be great in the FA Trophy, especially for the young lads who have yet to taste anything like that yet.”
Burke would also love to play at the national stadium next May in the play-off final, having missed last season’s semi-final defeat at Boreham Wood.
He said: “Once you finish in the play-offs you need to go all the way, or you can be out after just one extra game.”
It’s an experience Burke and his Fylde team-mates have no wish to repeat.
Luke Burke was talking to AFC Fylde’s Luke Lambourne