Dyche happy with strike options

Sean Dyche feels he now has more variety in his strike force to hurt teams.

Chris Wood
Chris Wood

Dyche brought in Chris Wood for a club record £15m, and Nahki Wells for a fee in the region of £5m on deadline day.

Andre Gray left for Watford for £18m, but in the new pair, Sam Vokes, Ashley Barnes and Jon Walters, Dyche is happy with his forward options: “It's just different weapons, the different types of players you need in any division, particularly the Premier League, how many different ways can you affect a game?

“Usually it's by centre forwards, wide players, sometimes central midfield players, sometimes defenders, but not normally in an attacking sense.

“I think we wanted more difference in the depth, and I think we've got that.

“Woody and Vokesy look physically similar but are different players, with different skill sets.

“Barnesy has a bit of everything and is an old-fashioned handful.

“Nahki is more of a goal poacher, goal sniffer, and Jon can play anywhere across the front three.

“The idea was to collect a group who can rub off on each other and compliment each other on any given day and circumstance, that's the theory anyway.”

There is a school of thought that Wood is similar to Vokes in particular, but Dyche feels that is a lazy comparison: “I think Woody has more to his game than just being a targetman, but most have nowadays, the game requires it. There's not many old-fashioned target men anymore, who literally hold it up, lay it off and get in the box.

“The game has moved on considerably.

“Vokesy’s not that either.

“You could even put Barnesy in that category.

“It's too easy as a journalist to throw them in that group, and there's more to them than that.”

Barnes was linked with a move away in the summer as Dyche brought new faces in, but he remains a huge admirer of the man he bought from Brighton in January 2014.

He joked: “I think Paulton Rovers wanted him back…

“No, we made it clear back in the summer, we’re not under pressure to sell anyone, obviously contractually that's different - it was a different ball game with Keano and Andre, we all know that.

“But if they're under contract, we’re under no pressure, it would be out planning, not someone else’s.

“I think a lot of Barnesy, everyone knows that.

“I think, in the ideal world, you have a group who know exactly how you work, the culture, and rub off on each other, and new players come in and are quickly informed how it is by the older players.

“We've got a healthy balance of that.

“The additions mound into what we want quickly, it saves you having to inform them all the time.”

Barnes’ fee looks a remarkable bargain, given the fees for Championship strikers in the summer, with Preston turning down Reading’s £8m offer for Jordan Hugill: “That was three and a half years ago, £450,000, look how much the market has moved on, he'd be worth a lot more than £450,000. But my dad tells me stories of the housing market…”