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Club News

Dyche Happy With Performance

3 December 2016

Sean Dyche felt his four changes helped the Clarets gain a performance, despite the 2-0 defeat at Stoke.

Sam Vokes, Steven Defour, Matt Lowton all dropped to the bench, with Johann Berg Gudmundsson absent through a hamstring strain.

Ashley Barnes partnered Andre Gray in attack, with Jon Flanagan returning to the starting line up at right back in a 4-4-2 formation.

And Dyche felt his side looked more positive, after the blow of falling behind to first half goals from Jonathan Walters and Marc Muniesa.

He said: “It was two soft goals, but other than that I thought it was a very good performance.

“We took the game on, which we wanted to do, and looked much more like ourselves.

“We know we have to change our away form. That’s an important part of the Premier League, and even though that’s difficult there were clear signs today that was a team that went to win a game.

“We haven’t shown that much away from home, but we did today and I thought the mentality was clear and some of the football was good.

“To come to Stoke and dominate a lot of the second half is very pleasing.”

Goalscorer Muniesa was also in the thick of the action at the opposite end, throwing an arm out in the area to deflect Scott Arfield’s first minute free kick wide and then being booked in the second half for grappling with Gray as the Clarets striker raced clear.

Dyche added: “I was surprised by as lot of decisions today. Mark is a great referee, but I thought today he was off his mark.

“In the first half we could have had a penalty when Muniesa sticks an arm at an unnatural position from a free kick.

“The same player then drags Andre down and I don’t know where that lives. In the initial contact Andre is through and clear, but by the time he has let it play and play and play, a defender gets around him.

“Why would he send him off if he is giving them time to recover? I thought the player looked worried, which is always a sign.

“We need a little bit of the rub of the green, but we looked to take care of business our own way today and not worry about relying on other things not going our way, so it was a lot stronger performance from us.”

The gaffer added: “The changes worked to a degree. It didn’t get us a win, but we have to start with performances because away we haven’t found our travelling legs.

“That said, the Premier League is tough and if you look at the money they have spent here and some of the players they’ve got, they are a strong side and we took the challenge on today.

“We just have to keep believing we will get our rewards if we keep performing like that.”

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