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Pope: Character Pulling Us Through

Clarets keeper looking up after denying Hammers to help secure another big win

9 July 2020

Goalkeeper Nick Pope is ready to keep seizing the moment as the Clarets target a memorable end to the season.

Pope’s 14th clean sheet of the campaign at West Ham wrapped up a 1-0 win which lifted Sean Dyche’s men back up to ninth place in the table – three points behind sixth-placed Wolves who come to Turf Moor next Wednesday.

The Clarets have put 10 points on the board since resuming after lockdown and with just one defeat in 12 league games stretching back to January are one of the form teams of the division.

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With four games to go, Burnley are five points shy of their highest tally as a Premier League club and Pope believes Dyche’s side is perfectly placed to keep aiming high.

“When you get 40 points as quickly as we did, you have a freedom to push on and do with the season what you like almost,” said the Clarets’ number-one.

“You don’t have to look below you anymore. It’s all about onwards and upwards and it would have been silly to waste that. I think as a group we realised that.

“The platform we built was one to springboard from and really use and that’s what we’re doing at the minute.

“That (the 2018 total of 54 points) would be a great target to go for and to break through the 50 points as well is not far away now.

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“There are new targets every week almost it feels like with the games coming thick and fast.

“As a club and a team, we are staying motivated and really going for every game when it comes and pushing ourselves every time.”

That was certainly the case at London Stadium where Jay Rodriguez’s 10th goal of the season set up a fourth win in six away games stretching either side of the enforced break.

The Clarets were also indebted to superb defensive display and a magnificent performance from Pope, whose handling and shot-stopping made him an unpassable barrier.

And with Burnley refusing to buckle they closed out a third 1-0 win in four games – with only the Blades able to pierce the Clarets’ back line in their current four-match unbeaten run.

“We were really happy to get over the line,” Pope – leading the race for the Premier League’s golden glove – told Clarets Player HD.

“We were a bit disappointed at the weekend not to see that one through, so to show character like we did was tremendous.

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“Good teams do it. You grind it out. You’ve got to work hard to get a goal ahead and you’ve got to protect that and we’re doing that really well at the minute.

“For a goalkeeper, it’s great to have 10 lads in front of me working as hard as they do. It’s great for me to see and gives everyone else confidence.

“It just shows what we’re about I think, especially at the moment when we’re stretched to keep pulling these results out and to keep holding strong.

“It shows we don’t pay too much attention to anything else. It’s the 11 out there working as hard as possible every minute that goes by.

“It’s a great strength of ours have – the character. That’s been like that from day one since I’ve been at the club.

“I’ve always had a great group of characters and nights like last night and moments like these it really shows.”

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