Sean Dyche insists fan power can be Burnley’s secret weapon in the final third of the season.
Saturday’s clash at Bournemouth is set to bring another impressive away following, with over 1,300 fans making the long trip to the south coast.
The Clarets have taken an average of 1,675 supporters to away league fixtures this season, including almost 5,000 fans to Wigan at Christmas and over 1,500 making the long trip to Yeovil in the New Year.
Burnley fans at Yeovil
And Dyche paid tribute to the backing his players have received; insisting it can make the difference!
He said: “We take great value in the fans and I think they know that. They were really important away at Bolton and taking that amount away is fantastic!
“The players responded to the fans and the fans in turn responded to the players.
“That connection in the group between the players, me as manager and the town is back.
“I think there is a real bond there and they’re believing again because they know this group go hard no matter what.”
Supporters have been cheered in particular by the remarkable goalscoring exploits of Sam Vokes and Danny Ings.
The prolific duo has struck 40 times this season; more than 15 of the 24 Championship teams have managed in total, including third-placed QPR!
Vokes on target at Bolton
But as the former Bournemouth strikers prepare for a first homecoming, Dyche insists his deadly duo are about much more than just goals.
He added: “We have raised the bar with our performance level and it’s not just about their goals.
“They offer a lot more than that and I’m as proud as anyone of what people don’t see; the ugly side of the game that Danny and Sam put in.
“The pressing and the awareness of how to defend from the front has changed massively since I’ve been at the club.”
The showdown with former Clarets’ boss Eddie Howe’s side sees Dyche looking to extend the gap over second placed QPR to six points.
But the Burnley boss expects a tough test on the club’s first ever visit to the Goldsands Stadium.
He said: “Eddie’s first marker will be to build on last year and make sure they are still in the division and he’s doing a good job so far.
“They’ve tried to be tighter defensively by playing one (man) sitting in midfield and brought Yann Kermorgant, who’s a bit more of a target man, so maybe Eddie’s trying to flex his ways a little bit.
“When they came up to Turf Moor there wasn’t as much passing football. They played 4-5-1, a lot of longer stuff and maybe he’s adapted to the division to find a way of making sure they get results.”
Danny Ings levels against Bournemouth earlier this season
Ahead of the contest, only Leicester and Derby have recorded more away league victories than the Clarets this season.
Tuesday’s 1-0 win at Bolton was the seventh time Burnley have tasted victory on the road.
And Dyche is looking for more of the same from his players as the season enters the final 16 games.
The gaffer said: “They’re all difficult games. It is a very difficult division and you can’t take it for granted so we won’t step off the gas.
“We get the feeling of what to expect, but it really comes back to us and how we deliver our performances.
“The one thing I can guarantee with my teams is sweat on the shirt and the minimum expectation is maximum effort.
“The players give that and have also given very good quality.
“You’ve got to maintain and build on each performance and we look to go again.
“We want the players to continue and be relentless in their attitude as they have been.”
If you can’t make it to Bournemouth this weekend, Clarets Player will bring you all the action from 2.45pm. Clarets Player is available from just 10p per day and brings you EVERY match commentary and full match video replays, in addition to unequalled behind the scenes access. CLICK HERE for details.
NEXT GAME AT TURF MOOR
Burnley host Nottingham Forest at Turf Moor on Saturday, February 22, 2014 (3pm KO).
This is a SILVER category game, with prices as below:
Adults: From £28
Over 65: From £17
U22: From £15
U18: from £8
U12: From £5
U10: From £5
U10: From £5
All sale tickets can be reserved in person at the ticket office, at the Clarets Store in town, by telephone on 0871 221 1914 (opt 1) or online HERE.
Please note: Supporters cannot purchase matchday tickets for Block 3 in the James Hargreaves Lower. Tickets can be bought for block 2.
Flexi-Tickets are still available for purchase, click HERE for more details.
Tickets are available in person at the ticket office, via telephone on 0871 221 1914 (opt 1) and online by clicking HERE
Tickets can also be purchased in advance from the Clarets Store until 5pm daily during the week, or from the Clarets Store in Charter Walk until 5.30pm.