Burnley boss Sean Dyche happy to follow experts’ lead as the debate rages over whether to cancel or try and resume the Premier League season

Sean Dyche is happy to follow the guidelines from the government and Premier League, as to whether the season will resume or be terminated.

Friday, 27th March 2020, 9:17 am
Updated Friday, 27th March 2020, 9:18 am
Sean Dyche

The campaign has been on hold for a fortnight now, amid the coronavirus pandemic, and is not scheduled to restart until April 30th at the earliest.

However, with non-league, up to National League level, having their seasons declared null and void, there is a growing sense that it may not be possible to restart, and it may be the wiser option to cancel and resume next season.

Dyche doesn’t have an opinion either way, and will be led by the experts.

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Having revealed there were no cases of coronavirus within the club, saying: “Everyone is okay and fit and well at the moment”, he said to Radio 4: “It’s a difficult situation, I think from a management - particularly my - post of view, a number of top experts are sharing information, so any information the government gives us, I consider to be important and safeguarding.

“The Premier League will work closely in line with that, and will have the stats, facts and analysis on the situation.

“So there are plenty of powerful people to guide us to where we need to be.

“I don’t think these decisions will be taken lightly.

“The Premier League is a powerful vehicle, not just for the finance it brings in through tax etc, but also for the feelgood factor as well - I think sometimes people forget how powerful football is, at all levels, particularly the Premier League, which is a bit of a showcase.

“If it can be done, it’s good for all to have sport and the Premier League on TV.”

Burnley were due back in to training on Monday, but were told to stay away until April 6th at least.

However, the players have all the support they need to tick over with their fitness and mental well being in the meantime: “As we know, the marvel of modern gadgetry means we can stay in touch with people pretty simply, through what’s app or FaceTime if needed.

“I’m not the best (with gadgets) but I have a 17-year-old son and a 15-year-old daughter so I can assure you they’ve been filling me in. I’ve been doing a few zoom chats and Microsoft team calls, so I’m learning all about this.

“I can handle FaceTime, WhatsApp and texts, so I’m learning some new things myself.

“We’re governed by the rules and regulations laid down, so we encouraged our players to do the obvious, stay at home with their families, look after themselves first and foremost, and play our part within the bigger picture.

“Inside of that, we have support in many areas of the club, dietary, sports science, even the psychology side of things, which is important - footballers are used to being out there every day training hard, so putting all these things into place and giving them a pretty simple schedule to follow to make sure they keep some kind of fitness, so that hopefully when the time comes, we can start to ramp up that fitness and get them back to full fitness.”

Dyche added: “At the moment, it’s like a training break, we’re looking at it like that.

“They are keeping some level of fitness, true fitness and sharpness is different, we all know that, but once you are at a high level you can keep that base top end fitness, then it’s about really sharpening up.

“We have no dates yet, so hopefully as they come more freely, through the Premier League, we have that to look forward to.”

On Thursday, the club announced they would continue to pay all casual staff, and Dyche feels that is the right thing to do: “At the moment we are just making sure everyone stays well and fit and looking after their families, doing their bit as we all should be doing.

“I think doing the right thing is an important factor. I understand the community at Burnley and how important the club is there - the club plays it’s part and increasingly has done over the years.

“The community side and development side of the club has all grown in line with the club, with everyone playing their part, including the club doing the right thing when it can.

“Everyone wants to do that. The idea of these troubled times, we hope people can come together and they seemingly are, with the fabulous show for the NHS last night.”