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Dyche: Everyone Wants A Shirt

Boss pleased with competition as Clarets make perfect start

12 August 2019

Sean Dyche is backing his class of 2019/20 after they set another modern-day best for the Clarets.

Burnley kicked off a fourth successive top-flight campaign for the first time since the early 1970s with a 3-0 win over Southampton.

An Ashley Barnes double and a sweet third goal from Johann Berg Gudmundsson made it the club’s biggest opening-day win since 1966.

And Dyche believes his current crop of Clarets is well equipped to take on another Premier League challenge.  

“We’ve managed to work in the market best we can with the finances that are available, and I think we’ve done a good job with that,” said the Burnley boss.

Pieters cross.jpg

Erik Pieters created two goals on his Clarets' debut

“There’s a competition within the group which hopefully will bode well for what comes next because we want that competitive element and people who want the shirt.”

Dyche added three outfield signings during the summer transfer window and – crucially – kept hold of all of his bug guns barring out-going goalkeeper Tom Heaton.

Erik Pieters was the only one of the new trio to start against Southampton last Saturday, with Jay-Rodriguez coming off the bench against his former club and on-loan midfielder Danny Drinkwater watching from the stands following his deadline-day arrival from Chelsea.

And Dyche admits everyone now has a fight for their place after Pieters had claimed Charlie Taylor’s starting spot at left-back.

“Charlie’s been a bit unlucky. He is a bit behind the curve,” Dyche added.

“He missed the early part of pre-season and that work is really important. We’ve tried to fast-track him through the games.

Rodriguez Lennon substitutes.jpg

Jay Rodriguez started his second Burnley spell on the bench, alongside Aaron Lennon

“But in balancing that, Erik has laid down a marker.

“He has made it clear in pre-season he’s not here to make up the numbers.

“He’s been at it all pre-season, fit, well, lean and wants to play.

“We want that competitive edge.

“We’ve got Jay-Rod as well and Drinky will get fitter. He’s in good shape, actually, and we’ve been really pleased with that.

“But he needs a week to 10 days to get more used to us and get a feel of it. But those lads who’ve come in will know there’s a competitive spirit.

“It’s respectful, which is important, but there are people laying down markers already, which I think is a great thing to have.

“We have got real balance to the look of our squad now and I’ve got faith in all of them.”

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