Dan Agyei’s cameo appearances for the Clarets in the Premier League are all part of the learning process for the teenage striker says boss Sean Dyche.
The 19-year-old, signed from AFC Wimbledon in 2015, was handed his senior bow at Turf Moor in Sunday’s defeat to Manchester United when replacing Ashley Barnes in the 75th minute.
It’s a big ask coming on against these today but we want him to understand that’s the reality of the PLSean Dyche
Agyei, who spent three months on loan at the Ricoh Arena earlier in the season, making 12 starts for Coventry in League 1, scoring four goals, made his first appearance in the top flight in the 2-1 loss against Liverpool at Anfield last month having been named in the 18-man matchday squad for the first time at the KCOM Stadium in February.
The youngster was also given some game time at Goodison Park, replacing Barnes again in the 3-1 defeat to Everton.
“It’s a big ask coming on against these today but we want him to understand that’s the reality of the PL,” said Dyche.
“To try and affect a game when you’re 2-0 down like today. He’s turned, he’s got a shot off, he’s driven a couple of times,
“It’s all part of the learning process for a young player. We didn’t do it for that reason, that’s a knock-on effect, we did it because we believe he could have affected it today. Barnesy had give his lot as he always does.
“We’re not playing around with it, but it’s part of him growing and learning as a player. I thought the crowd were terrific with him, he’s a very young man to come on in a game like today.
“He’s realised the tempo and the pace of the PL. It’s important we remain focused on what we’re doing now but also that next layer that is coming through.”
Dyche was also pleased with the impact of Icelandic international Johann Berg Gudmundsson as the winger returned from injury.
The 26-year-old made his first appearance since limping off during the FA Cup tie against Lincoln City.
“I thought he had a real go when he came on,” he said. “We want people to affect it from the bench. Johann came on and he was bright.
“It will need everything, we always give everything and we will need it all for the last four games.”
Dyche will assess the shin injury sustained by Ben Mee throughout the week after the defender was withdrawn at the interval against Manchester United.
But striker Sam Vokes and midfielder Scott Arfield should be back in contention for Saturday’s trip to Selhurst Park.
“Ben has been managing it really, it was getting sorer and sorer and we have to make a decision,” he said. “We’ll give him a few days off now to rest it and hopefully it will settle down.
“Both (Vokes and Arfield) were close. I’d imagine as long as the next few days go well for them both they’ll be back in contention this week.”