Clarets boss hopes Pride Park luck holds for fourth season in a row
Sean Dyche hopes that Pride Park will again prove a happy hunting ground as the Clarets look to go into the international break on a high.
The Clarets have won their last three league games away to Derby and remain unbeaten in eight games against the Rams, home and away, dating back to January 2007.
Charlie Austin on target at Derby last season
And ahead of this weekend’s meeting, the Clarets boss insists his side have what it takes to inflict more misery on Nigel Clough’s team.
The Burnley boss said: “I know it is a happy hunting ground and we also had a good result at home against Derby last season.
“There is no definitive reason why that happens; it just sometimes does and what it does mean is we are capable (of winning).
“It’s another tough game, but then again they all are and we’re up against a squad that Nigel (Clough) believes is of the better ones in his time there.
Dyche added: “I like Nigel, not only a football manager but as a person. He knows the game, has worked hard at what he done and I have a lot of respect for him.
“He has been allowed time at Derby and rightly so in my eyes because he is a very good manager.
“I think when Nigel got there he had to transition out some big players and a big squad.
“He did that over a period of time and has built his own squad and the messages coming out of Derby, from different people I speak to, are that they now have a squad that is now in apposition to take it forward and challenge.
“There are a lot of teams thinking the same.
“This is a tough division and last season was the best example of that, but we prepare ourselves well to go and hopefully get the outcome we want.
“We are going about our business well at the moment and hungry for the team to develop, so what a good place to go and push yourself.”
Dyche is set to recall Tom Heaton in goal following his one-match suspension for his controversial red card at Brighton last weekend.
Alex Cisak deputised in an impressive full debut in the midweek Capital One Cup victory over Preston North End.
But the gaffer insists Heaton’s misfortune at his sending off will not affect his chances of resuming duties between the posts.
He said: “I made it clear after the game that Tom has laid down a really strong marker.
“That’s not to say we don’t value Alex because we do and his performance on Tuesday was very good.
“But Tom has done enough so far and I think it takes more than one game for a player to earn himself the next start sometimes.
“I think I am reasonably loyal to players and Tom has the shirt at the moment.”
Ben Mee will be hoping to retain his place at left back after making his first appearance of the season against North End alongside Michael Duff, who will challenge Kevin Long to partner skipper Jason Shackell at the heart of the defence.
Burnley fans are reminded that tickets are still available for the Pride Park clash, but admission does go up by £3 on the day.
And if you can’t make it to Derby, Clarets Player will have full match commentary from 2.50pm.
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