'Clarets understand the challenges', says boss Sean Dyche
But as they look to build on their base of a first point of the season at West Brom, they know things don’t get any easier, as they take on four of the established Big Six in their next seven games, starting this evening at home to Spurs.
And when that sequence ends? The small matter of Aston Villa, who currently have a 100% record, Wolves, Leeds and Sheffield United.
Sean Dyche doesn’t treat any game as bigger than another, however, and is ready to take on the challenge as ever: “I think the realities are we’ve got a group that has been around the
Premier League for quite a bit now, six out of seven seasons, so we understand the challenges.
“We’re not naive, they understand how tough some games are – all games are, but there are certain teams give you a much tougher game because of the qualities they have.
“But, we also have a mentality where we go into every game believing we can win it, and we have to take on each challenge as it comes.”
Dyche feels his players will go into those games in much better shape physically and psychologically after getting their first point on the board.
The Clarets played out the first goalless draw of the season in the top flight against West Brom at The Hawthorns.
And that result will now give them a base to build from.
“We’ve had three out of four away games, although it is an awkward time in stadiums of course, the feel of it, but statistically it is difficult to win away games in the Premier League,” he said.
“It [a point] is so pleasing in some ways, a point on the board, which is just as important psychologically.
“We’re coming through an awkward period with injuries, off the field situations that have needed managing, and pleased we looked more like what we’re about.
“The injuries have to be factored in, but, within all that, we get on with the challenge, as we have done over many years here.
“This week has been a really good training week and a good show of that with a more solid performance, with some good moments in it.
“We have to be careful what we wish for, and sort of over demand, because it’s an unforgiving league, so there’s got to be a bit of reality, but I think we can build on that performance and move forward from this and get wins and points.”
The Clarets chief says there were some encouraging signs from Monday evening’s stalemate as his side started to look more like themselves.
The Clarets had shipped seven goals in two games on the road previously, but looked far more organised as they limited the hosts to very few chances on their way to a first clean sheet of the term.
Nick Pope and James Tarkowski made important blocks when the hosts threatened after the break, and the England international goalkeeper denied Matheus Pereira late on, but the Clarets were largely untested otherwise.
Dyche said: “The start point for us was to get back to a performance more like ourselves, in both boxes, defending one well and looking a threat in the other, and I thought we did, so that was pleasing.
“We kept them quite quiet, Popey had some saves where he smothered it far side, so I was pleased with the defensive side of things.
“And I thought we made enough chances, and particularly the quality of chances, to score a goal, and if we had, we probably would have seen the game through.”