Canada international Scott Arfield (pictured) started and played 75 minutes in Burnley's English Premier game against Swansea City on August 13, 2016. (Photo: Mexsport)
BURNLEY, England -- Canada international Scott Arfield returned to the English Premier League on Saturday as his Burnley side fell 1-0 to visiting Swansea City in the 2016/17 opener for each side.
The Clarets earned promotion to the top division after capturing the 2015/16 Championship title, having previously spent the 2014-15 season in England's top division.
"It's my second time to get promoted, but this time it was believed that we were going to do it," said Arfield. "We fully believed that we were going to do it, from the first day in pre-season, so to deal with the expectation and the pressure, coming down and going straight back up, I think that's why we finished first (in the Championship)."
On March 25, 2016, Arfield made his debut for host Canada in a 3-0 World Cup Qualifying loss to Mexico, before a capacity crowd of 54,798 at BC Place in Vancouver.
The 27-year-old played in two more internationals in June, recording an assist in matches against Azerbaijan (1-1 draw) and Uzbekistan (2-1 win). Those matches came less than a month after completing the success Championship campaign that saw Arfield score eight goals in 46 matches.
He hopes to be back in Canada colors when qualifying for Russia 2018 resumes next month with key encounters against Honduras (September 2, away) and El Salvador (September 6, home). From those three nations, only one will advance to the Hexagonal, CONCACAF's final round.
"They are two tough opponents (against which) to get results, but I fully believe that with the squad we have that's exactly what we can do," Arfield finished. "These are two games that we think we can go and win."