Clarets boss Dyche hails strikers' thirst for goals
Sean Dyche hailed his strikers' thirst for goals, as Ashley Barnes joined Chris Wood in double figures in the Premier League.
Barnes hit his 10th of the season to earn a 1-1 draw at struggling Stoke City on Sunday, to enhance their Europa League prospects.
It was Burnley’s top Premier League goalscorer’s 20th at this level, in his third season, as he continued a hot streak with his sixth in eight games.
Record signing Wood also has 10 in the top flight this season, despite missing two months with a medial knee ligament injury.
The pair look like firing the Clarets to seventh place, at least, which will clinch European football for the first time in 51 years, following Southampton’s FA Cup semi-final defeat to Chelsea on Sunday.
With finalists Manchester United and Chelsea bound for European qualification, the place for winning the FA Cup will now go to the club which finishes in seventh place.
Burnley are on pole position for seventh, sitting nine points clear of Leicester City, who have a game on hand, but only 12 points available to them.
And, after Barnes netted at the second attempt from Ashley Westwood’s centre, following a superb save from Stoke keeper Jack Butland, Dyche hailed the frontman’s rich vein of form: “Barnesy is alive to the chance, and as a striker that’s what you want.
“You want good goals, every striker does, but you take anything.
“I saw Harry Kane arguing (over a goal) and people questioning that. Why would you question that?
“Top strikers want goals, that’s the thirst and hunger you want from your strikers, trust me.
“I think our strikers have that.”
Sam Vokes has four goals this term, after top-scoring with 12 in all competitions last season, finishing two ahead of Andre Gray, who was sold to Watford in the summer.
And Dyche also had Jon Walters back on the bench after recovering from knee surgery, at former club Stoke City, with fellow summer signing Nahki Wells dropping out of the 18.
Dyche said: “Vokesy came on really active, Jon (Walters) didn’t get on, but was around it partly as a sign of respect for what he’s done for this club, and to be back in our group, and Nahki (Wells) misses out.
“But there’s a good collection of people here all wanting to play, all wanting to fight for what it is.
“You want that thirst from your strikers.
“Can you score a great goal?
“All strikers want to, like Barnesy at West Ham.
“Can you nick one like that?
“Just as important for us and the strikers.
“At the end of the season, however many they have, you’re not bothered how they got them.”