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'Healthy Mix' The Right Recipe

Sean Dyche hails staying power as Clarets complete the course

9 May 2019

Sean Dyche praised the staying power of his players who will wind up their season’s work on Sunday.

The Clarets will have been hard at it for over nine months by the time they end their Premier League campaign against Arsenal at Turf Moor.

A first ever competitive fixture in July kicked things off as Dyche’s men launched their Europa League bid at Aberdeen.

Since then, they have come through a domestic battle to secure their top-flight status with a bit to spare.

And Dyche paid tribute to those who have seen it through – as well as those that have provided the back-up – with Player of the Year Ashley Westwood among those at the forefront.

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“He came back super-fit. He was on it from day one in pre-season and laid down a marker very early,” said the Burnley boss.

“He had a tough early season, like a lot did, but the way he’s been from the turnaround has been excellent.

“A lot is made of I made a decision with Joe Hart and Tom Heaton and Dwight McNeil and Bardo came in around that time as well.

“But people sometimes forget the players who have were playing regularly at that time, who were really beginning to turn their performances to a really high level.

“Westy was one of those, Corky started to thrive again, Ben Mee in the second half of the season has been fantastic, Tarky settled into a lot more of a rhythm, Dwight, Jeff Hendrick, who we moved out wide and has done a brilliant job, and the two centre-forwards have been outstanding in the second half of the season.

“All of a sudden you’ve got a healthy mix out of what looked like trouble.”

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Reaching the half-way point of the campaign on Boxing Day, the Clarets were in the bottom three.

But they transformed their fortunes on the back of an unbeaten eight-game run.

And Dyche insists it has been a collective effort to give his side the chance of potentially finishing as high as 14th in the table and securing what would be their second best Premier League placing.

“The biggest respect of all for me is the players who are outside the main XI, because that can be really difficult,” he added.

“The players here are so diligent when they are not in the side and when their chance comes – and that’s been obvious from some key changes this season – they have been ready to deliver, and they have delivered.

“That’s massive credit to their professionalism.”

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