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Dyche: The Fight Goes On

No letting up as the Clarets re-group ready to go again

11 February 2019

Sean Dyche knows the Clarets can’t drop their guard despite a record-breaking run.

Saturday’s 3-1 win at Brighton made it seven games without defeat for the first time as a Premier League club.

Chris Wood’s double and an Ashley Barnes penalty also gave Burnley their longest undefeated run in the top flight since February 1975 as they completed the double over the Seagulls.

The Clarets moved up to 15th-place as a result – level on points with Crystal Palace in 13th spot.

But Dyche was quick to point out that nothing must change in his side’s approach as they look to keep moving away from the bottom three.

“We’ve had to fight for everything we’ve got, and we continue to do so,” stressed the Burnley boss.

“Last year was different, everyone knows that, but historically – whether it’s fighting to get out of the Championship or fighting to stay in the Premier League or fighting to win.

“We can’t take it for granted. It’s the Premier League. It’s really, really tough. We’ve had a great run and we have to continue that run.

“The players have deserved everything they’ve got. Now it’s safeguarding it, keeping the mentality, keeping with the energy and keeping with the belief in the side.

“That’s going to be key going forward.”

The Clarets secured their third away win of the season with an un-changed line-up but were forced into a late squad re-shuffle on the eve of the game.

Dwight McNeil claimed his third assist of the season

Dyche had welcomed the extra attacking options likely to be available to him, but then had to count out wingers Johann Berg Gudmundsson and Robbie Brady after both reported muscle twinges which couldn’t be risked.

“We lost two important players in Robbie and Johann,” added Dyche, who again started with Jeff Hendrick and Dwight McNeil on the flanks.

“That’s tough, but the group said ‘right, let’s get on with it’ because they believe in each other.

“I admire the players for that; ‘No excuses, we’re a group, let’s get on with it’ and that’s a powerful thing and they delivered again, Jeff playing out of position and excellent again and young Dwight.

“There aren’t many 19-year-olds rolling around the Premier League and not many in the fight scene and he’s handling himself very well. I’m really enjoying what he’s doing.”

The Clarets now get the chance to re-group and re-charge their batteries, with no fixture next weekend due to the fifth round of the FA Cup.

Dyche is taking his squad to southern Portugal for some warm-weather training and believes the four-day trip will be of benefit with a visit from title-chasing Tottenham Hotspur next up on Saturday, 23 February.

“They will be working,” he said. “It’s a nice place we go to with a nice feel.

“They will have a bit of down-time, but they will be training.

“Win or lose we were going, once we had the chance. This is a group who have given a lot and continued to give a lot, for me, for themselves, for the fans, for the club.

“One thing I never question is the pride I have in the group, their professionalism, the way they conduct themselves and the way they are.

“I mentioned that earlier in the season when we were having a tough time. I said: ‘don’t let them think I’m not proud of them’, because I am.

“ It’s just that, obviously, it rubber-stamps it when you’re winning.”

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