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The FA Cup Fourth Round

Pearson praise for hero Wood

Nigel Pearson lauded his match-winner Chris Wood after a goal and an assist inspired Leicester's 2-0 win over Burnley, but the boss is not taking promotion for granted.

Last Updated: 31/03/14 at 14:21 Post Comment

Nigel Pearson: Praise for Chris Wood

Nigel Pearson: Praise for Chris Wood

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Leicester inflicted Burnley's first home league defeat in just over a year as Wood set up the first then scored the second to send Pearson's men six clear at the top of the Championship.

David Nugent's first-half goal gave Leicester a lead which Wood doubled in excellent fashion late on - the striker's eighth goal of a promising season.

Pearson was quick to praise the New Zealander, who also scored the dramatic equaliser against Yeovil Town in midweek.

Speaking to Sky Sports 1, Pearson said: "Woody's had the chance to go on there and do something slightly different, while Taylor-Fletcher's made his impact.

"It's a 50-50, and I'd be disappointed as a centre-back not to deal with it. That's what Woody's capable of.

"People forget how young he is, he's learning the game.

"He'll gain an awful lot of positives from working with the likes of Taylor-Fletcher and (Kevin) Phillips."

Though he was full of praise for Wood in particular, Pearson was also delighted with his side's organisation and efficiency in dispatching a Burnley side who had embarked on a 17-game unbeaten run.

"It's a great win today and a great performance where we've been able to play some really attractive football," Pearson said. "I think we've been efficient when we've had to deal with their threat."

The Leicester manager was a little more withdrawn on the prospect of his side gaining promotion to the Premier League however, though they need just three wins from their remaining eight matches to secure automatic promotion.

"I've just come out of the dressing room having spoken to the lads about 'don't think we're over the line, don't take anything for granted'.

"I was told before the game that it's the sixth game in a row we've been unchanged. We've got quality behind the scenes, and three players today disappointed not to even be on the bench.

"It's hard to keep players onside, but they all support each other very well.

"When you get the chance it's important that you take it.

"It's a difficult league to talk too much about these types of fixtures. You look at the teams who are scrapping, and the vast majority of sides have something to play for.

"You underestimate any opponent in this division at your own peril. We will give everybody the respect that they are due.

"If you ever get complacent, you come unstuck. If our performance is right we've got a good chance of winning. If our performance is under-par then teams will make it very difficult for us.

"We've been talking about it [promotion] all season. After the end of last year there's always a nagging doubt, but fortunately our owners have been very patient with myself and the staff.

"The squad's in better shape now, and we should see it through."

Pearson did save praise for today's opponents Burnley, who are favourites to secure the second automatic promotion spot ahead of QPR.

"They've got players missing today who've been crucial for them so far. Sean (Dyche) will be doing everything he can now to see them through because they're a really good side.

"I never like to see players who've been so pivotal go off. It looked a nasty one and I hope he's okay. It would be very unfortunate for Burnley - who have been the most consistent side this season - to go into the final stages without their strongest players."

Having been hospitalised earlier in the week after complaining of illness, Pearson said on his health: "I'm okay. Thanks for all the well wishes and to the Blackburn Royal and their staff."

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