Burnley defender Erik Pieters hoping the Clarets' Carabao Cup tie can be the catalyst for change

Erik Pieters is hoping that Burnley's Carabao Cup tie at home to Rochdale will be the catalyst that turns their season around.

Tuesday, 21st September 2021, 2:45 pm
Updated Tuesday, 21st September 2021, 2:46 pm
Emil Krafth of Newcastle United clears the ball under pressure from Erik Pieters of Burnley during the Carabao Cup Second Round match between Newcastle United and Burnley at St. James Park on August 25, 2021 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England.

The Clarets haven't won at Turf Moor in 14 games in all competitions, a sequence that stretches over an eight-month period.

That run also includes an FA Cup loss to Championship side AFC Bournemouth, who progressed to the quarter-final stage of the competition last term.

Goals have also been hard to come by for Sean Dyche's men on their own patch as they haven't scored more than once in a single game during that spell.

Erik Pieters of Burnley shields the ball from Jamal Lewis of Newcastle United during the Carabao Cup Second Round match between Newcastle United and Burnley at St. James Park on August 25, 2021 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England.

With Burnley carrying a ratio of 0.57 goals per game during that time, Pieters said: "I think it's a part of football.

"We've had that experience, but we know how it goes. We've been here before so I'm not worried, but it [first win] is better coming sooner rather than later.

"It is frustrating because we've played good football, but I'm 100% confident that we can turn it around.

"I think it's a really good thing to have a cup game in-between, both for us to get games in and for that winning streak.

"Maybe the cup game can be the turnaround and we can take it from there."

The Dutchman is in line to make only his second start of the season, both of which will have come in this competition.

The 33-year-old started the tie against Newcastle United at St James's Park last month when contributing to a clean sheet before the visitors prevailed in a penalty shootout.

The ex-Stoke City and PSV Eindhoven defender is, like anyone else, determined to get more time on the pitch.

And he feels run outs in the cup provide the perfect opportunity to show the "gaffer" that he's worthy of more minutes in the Premier League.

Having made an 11-minute cameo against Liverpool at Anfield, he said: "Looking at the squad for the players who aren't currently playing in the league, including myself, it's a good chance to see where we're up to, where our fitness levels are, and to show that we can be of value to the team as well.

"There's a win-win in every single game and in training. I just want to play football, I think everybody just wants to play football.

"I'm looking forward to playing and just having a go, then we can take it from there and make it really difficult for the manager to choose between players.

"More games means more opportunities. Of course, the league is always going to be the main priority, you want to stay in the Premier League, but there are cup games in-between as well. We've got a strong side and we just want to take it as far as possible."

Pieters, whose contract expires at the end of the season, added: "I think that's the hardest part for any manager; to try and keep the players that aren't playing happy.

"I think that's always going to be a difficult task, it has been for every manager that I've had at every single club.

"I think he's doing a good job and it helps with cup games in-between because you can give opportunities to all those players.

"With the experience that he [Sean Dyche] has he knows how to manage his players. I think he's doing a good job."