Boss hails defensive effort

Clarets boss Sean Dyche hailed his defensive unit after extending their unbeaten away record at Anfield.
Scott Arfield puts Burnley ahead at AnfieldScott Arfield puts Burnley ahead at Anfield
Scott Arfield puts Burnley ahead at Anfield

Burnley claimed a 1-1 draw at Liverpool, having won 3-2 at Chelsea and drawn 1-1 with Spurs at Wembley, to claim go three games without an away defeat at this level for the first time in 42 years.

The Clarets sit sixth in the table after five games, and Dyche said: “You've got to defend well in the Premier League, but especially at these places.

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“I can assure you our game plan wasn't to come here and keep the ball all game, it ain't going to happen here, they're going to have lots of the ball and efforts, but if you keep them as far out as we did, it's much harder to score from 30 yards than six.

“I felt we did that well, our shape was good, our defensive unit was excellent, other than getting caught very square for their goal from a long ball - the irony of that.

“But that was it, I felt we were excellent.

“Whatever our opinions are, they made seven changes, players who have been bought for absolute fortunes, bringing players off the bench at £30m a time, so our job is to find a way of getting a point or a win.

“I think we've done that very well today.”

The away form is another big plus, with five points gained from three games, after claiming seven from 19 last term.

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So what has Dyche changed: “I think it's what the players have done, not just me, I have to guide them, my coaches work with them, but the players are learning about the Premier League, some we've bought in who have done great for us, some who have a deeper understanding, but the players who are developing with the club, every year you stay in the Premier League, it's almost subliminal, you just fell more at ease and have more belief.

“The team can keep moving forward.

“There are challenges along the way, we’re not naive, we've had a healthy start and there's work to be done, but there has been adjustments made.

“There's some tactical bits and bobs we've changed, the three in midfield, but that comes down to the players we've signed and what suits the group.

“Then you add that into a game plan, and we’re really pleased with that today, because it's difficult to come here.

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“We knew we had to be resolute within our shape, cover a lot of ground and make it uncomfortable for them, and the best way of doing that is, what everyone tells you, they're having a tough time with set pieces, and we felt that would be important, and we had two cleared off the line.

“Therefore our planning was right, to take that seriously.

“You won't out football them, so it's our job to get points and wins.

“People can decide on brands, long balls, short balls, all they want. But my job is to allow this team the best opportunity to be successful.”

Nick Pope made one particularly eye-catching save from Dominic Solanke, on his first Premier League start after the injury to Tom Heaton last Sunday, and Dyche was pleased with the 25-year-old: “I must say, I think a lot of the stuff was good basics, our defensive unit in front of him was excellent.

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“Then, when the moment of truth came, he delivered two fantastic saves.

“Two deflections along the way, one a hand above his head to get one that nicked off someone, and the other to get it onto the bar from short distance.

“We believe in the players we work with, and he's another one like that.

“People made a lot of losing Keano, but I believe in Tarky, Kevin Long, Ben Mee, and I believe in all the players.

“Their adjustment to what is expected, and Popey is very young in the game, but it's a big task and he handled it very well.”