Burnley boss Sean Dyche hopes sides keep taking risks with new goalkick rule

John Stones reacts after Nicolas Otamendis mistake let in Teemu Pukki to put Norwich 3-1 ahead against Manchester City
John Stones reacts after Nicolas Otamendis mistake let in Teemu Pukki to put Norwich 3-1 ahead against Manchester City

One of the new rules introduced this season, has been that goal kicks no longer have to leave the area,

Previously, a goal kick had to be retaken if it did not leave the box.

And teams are looking to take advantage by inviting a higher press, and either playing through it, or going longer to exploit a higher line, with the fact players can’t be offside from a goal kick.

However, even the Big Six have fallen foul early in the season, especially at the weekend, when Arsenal played their way into trouble, a wayward pass from Sokraris helping concede a goal to Tom Cleverley to let Watford back into a game they drew from being 2-0 down.

Champions Manchester City had also seen Nicolas Otamendi caught in possession by Burnley’s next opponents Norwich City, who made it 3-1 through Teemu Pukki.

Arsenal have conceded more turnovers close to their own goal than any side in the Premier League so far this season - no surprise for anyone who saw Burnley successfully press them time and again at the Emirates last month.

Cleverley spoke of his bemusement that Arsenal continued to play out at Vicarage Road, something they did against Burnley, to the anxiety of their own supporters: “We weren’t surprised they tried to play like that, it was more of a surprise they didn’t adapt during the game and they were pretty stubborn with it.”

Arsenal May have given up the ball to a high press more than any other side, but the team who have conceded the fewest turnovers close to their own goal? Burnley.

The cynical may suggest that is because the Clarets go longer, earlier, but they have defenders who defend, use their common sense - play when they can play, and opt for safety when they are in danger.

But, their equaliser at Brighton came from a short pass from goalkeeper Nick Pope, with the ball travelling almost the length of the pitch before Jeff Hendrick scored.

Sean Dyche hopes teams continue to take risks: “Modern football, they tell me. You know when you’re about 12, and everybody goes ‘stop, stop stop! no, no, no!’, ‘you don’t pass the ball six yards to that man there, because he’s in trouble’.

“The right way, I believe they call it now, modern football.

“I always like the bit where you take a risk at their end, on their six-yard line, and they take a risk, I really enjoy that...

“I’ve been really enjoying all this risk-taking, I hope they keep taking risks...I see my centre forwards on the edge of the box...

“I’m not knocking it, you believe in what you believe in, I’m just saying I enjoy it when they do it, that would be brilliant, thank you.

“It’s up to them, I’m not there to judge, but if people are trying to put 15 passes around their six-yard line, in front of their keeper, I would suggest that probably won’t work out every week.

“It might some weeks, probably not on a consistent basis, but that’s for everyone else to decide.”

Burnley are 11th in terms of forcing high turnovers, and Dyche added: “I know, it’s brilliant, not much risk in that one, and lots of good stuff in that one - anyone would think that’s what the game is made on, try to score in that one and stop it in that one, as if by magic.

“I find everyone’s confusion confusing.

“Everyone now has people in the box trying to play out - imagine they said ‘you can’t have anyone in the box, but you are allowed to kick it a long way’, what will they do? ‘Can we? Brilliant.’

“Ederson fires one over the top and they go and score, interesting.

“But pragmatism is boring.

“I tell my players to think and trust themselves when it’s on.

“Last week, short pass from Popey, four passes later it’s in the back of the net, different ways of doing it.

“But I hope they keep playing around the six-yard box, ‘any second now, any second...boom, there’s another chance’.

“Each to their own.”