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England Hopeful Keane Benefiting From Long Game

22 March 2017

Sean Dyche believes Burnley’s long-term planning is paying off as Michael Keane looks to add his name to the Turf Moor international roll of honour.

Keane is pushing for a first senior cap as part of the England squad preparing to face Germany in a friendly tonight and Lithuania in a World Cup qualifier on Sunday.

The Clarets’ defender is one of seven Burnley players – alongside England team-mate Tom Heaton – currently away on international duty.

And Dyche sees that as a welcome reflection of the work he and his staff have been able to do with his playing staff since his appointment as Burnley boss at the end of October, 2012.

Dyche said: “I’m pleased at a lot of the players here for developing. Some will catch the headlines, like Keano, because of what he’s done, particularly this season.

“But people seem to forget. It wasn’t; he came here two years ago. There has been a depth to his development. It’s not been overnight. Sometimes its misrepresented about some of these players. 

“It takes time sometimes for these players to develop into what they are going to be. And unfortunately, due to the harsh side of football they don’t always get time, managers that is.

“They don’t always get time to see these players develop long term.”

Dyche – the seventh longest serving manager in the country – added: “I’ve been fortunate through my staff and from the players that we’ve had success enough to allow me the chance - ­and the work my staff do with  them - to hopefully rub off on some of these players. 

“Keano’s a good example of that, Tom Heaton is another one. There are various examples. It’s not just them two. 

“But there are two that are quite obvious about how they have moved forward with their own careers, how they have moved forward with Burnley and are now being recognised on the international scene.”

Keane and Heaton are in Dortmund for Wednesday night’s friendly against Germany, the first match in charge for Gareth Southgate since he was up-graded from caretaker to full-time manager last November.

And Dyche is wishing the former Under-21s boss well as he looks to make the step up.

“I spoke openly about it at the time,” said the Clarets’ manager.

“One of the man points I found with him being in the system for so long, and understanding the FA and how to work with the U21s etc, was for that pathway to end up with a chance of being England manager. 

“I think there was a common-sensical view and beyond that we want him to do well. We want an English manager to be recognised full-stop, particularly at international level of course. We certainly will be supporting him as best we can.”

Dyche was speaking in an interview at the Clarets' Barnfield Training Centre to promote the work of Prostate Cancer UK in conjunction with the League Managers Association.

Sky Sports presenter Jeff Stelling is planning another marathon walk this summer to raise money for the charity.

Stelling is planning to walk 15 marathons in 15 days, coving 400 miles and visiting 40 football clubs, including Burnley. He will be walking from Turf Moor to Huddersfield Town on Monday, 12 June. For details, click HERE

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