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'We're Both Fighting For Points'

Boss Sean Dyche looks ahead to the Clarets' trip to West Ham

9 March 2018

Sean Dyche believes Saturday’s trip to West Ham will not be straightforward, despite the Hammers’ recent run of bad results.

David Moyes’ side has won just one of their last six Premier League games and have been on the end of 4-1 beatings in their past two matches to sit 13th in the table, only three points off the relegation zone.

But despite the Clarets’ position in seventh place and 10 points better off than their opponents, Dyche isn’t under-estimating the challenge ahead as Burnley look for a first win at the London Stadium.

The Burnley boss said: “[It’s] certainly not an easy task, we know that. They’re fighting for points, we’re now fighting for points for different reasons.

“They are in a tough little spell after David Moyes was doing well, when he first went in, calming everything down.

Andy Carroll was dimissed in the October meeting at Turf Moor

“He is a very good manager in my opinion and I know Stuart Pearce well, who is a good coach and they’ve got a good staff there.

“We have to know about the opposition and the players will be certainly informed enough.

“We also have to focus on what we’re doing and how we’re going about our business, because even in a trickt run there have been some very strong performances.

It's important to remind ourselves of that and build on last weekend's performance against Everton.”

A first away win in eight matches would take the Clarets within two points of Arsenal, who don’t play until Sunday, in sixth place.

But Dyche – whose side drew 1-1 with West Ham in October after Chris Woods’ late equaliser ended a run of five successive defeats to the Hammers – is refusing to get carried away by Burnley's lofty status.

He added: “The next challenge is the one that’s right upon us and that’s West Ham, so the focus stays clear on that.

“It’s nice to finish as high as you can in a league table. We’re already up to the points’ tally from last year. We want to go beyond that and set a new marker.”

West Ham are to mark the 25th anniversary of the death of club legend Bobby Moore

West Ham coach Pearce, a friend of the Burnley manager from their playing days together at Nottingham Forest, is looking for a positive response from the Hammers, who are unbeaten at home in the league in 2018.

He told West Ham TV: “We’re playing a well-organised Burnley side, and a side that galvanised a victory last weekend. They’ve been playing particularly well.

“They are a good side with an outstanding manager and it’s a game where we’ve got to look to get on the front foot.”

Injury news

There are no changes from last week for the Clarets as this game still comes too soon for Tom Heaton and Scott Arfield. Jon Walters, Steven Defour and Robbie Brady remain on the sidelines with long-term injuries.

Chris Wood’s New Zealand international team-mate Winston Reid and fellow defender Sam Byram are both likely to be out for the rest of the season for West Ham after picking up injuries in last Saturday’s defeat at Swansea.

Andy Carroll, Ribeiro and Pedro Obiang remain unavailable for the Hammers, while Arthur Masuaku is serving the final match of his suspension.

But defenders James Collins and Angelo Ogbonna could return.

Match snippets

Burnley are the only club yet to be awarded a penalty in the Premier League this season, while West Ham have conceded six spot-kicks - the most in the division.

Clarets striker Ashley Barnes is bidding to score in three successive games for the first time since he did it for Brighton in May 2011.

West Ham haven't lost three games in a row by at least a three-goal margin since March 2008. They have lost their last two 4-1.

The Hammers are to hold a series of events and a minute's applause before kick-off to mark the 25th anniversary of the death of West Ham and England World Cup-winning captain Bobby Moore.


Lee Mason

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