More to come from Chris Wood, insists Sean Dyche, after striker hits Premier League milestone
Sean Dyche feels Chris Wood can only improve, after reaching his half-century of Premier League goals.
The 29-year-old claimed his 50th top flight strike against Crystal Palace, 49 of them with the Clarets, with his haul coming in 149 appearances.
He has been a consistent source of goals since a club record £15m move from Leeds United in the summer of 2017, and, asked whether he thought he would be this prolific, Dyche said: "No, he has done really well for us, and continues to do so.
"I still think there’s more to his game, but he does have that knack of scoring a goal.
"He finds a goal for us, as well as being in the right place at the right time.
"His movement is good, and he’s got that something extra when he’s really on it, which I like.
"It's not easy to score that many in the Premier League, especially at a club like this, so fair play to him."
In terms of where there is more to his game, could that be in being more aggressive and making full use of his 6ft 3ins frame?
Dyche smiled: "Well, aggressive is a funny word. At times he could maybe use his body better, but as you know, being aggressive gets bandied about around us at times, with no real need.
"We work, we want to win games and we play with an edge at times, but he will always go looking for chances.
"Brian Clough used to say that sometimes you’ve got to get hurt to score a goal.
"I think that’s what you get from the real, killer strikers, putting their bodies on the line.
"Alan Shearer was outstanding at that. He was tough as teak in his mentality to score a goal, and these are the things all strikers need to varying degrees.
"Woody wouldn’t have got this many if he didn’t have it, and that record of scoring at better than three a game is really good at a club like Burnley.
"It’s a challenge in itself to score goals, but he is also creative and works hard to help the team. So a big pat on the back for him."
Four years ago, Dyche took the plunge with Wood, who, at 25, had only 10 Premier League appearances under his belt, with West Brom and Leicester, without getting a run at the top level.
But after finishing as the Championship's top scorer with 27 goals in 2016/17, Dyche felt the time was right, and his judgement has paid off: "We did a lot of scouting before signing him.
"We watched him a lot, and I knew coaches who had worked with him when he was very young.
"He went out on a number of loan spells, and you probably learn something from all of them.
"So when we looked at him again, I thought, do you know what, I think he deserves a chance in the Premier League - I know he had a brief taste of it with Leicester, so another chance at it - and he’s done very well for us.
"He will find a goal at times from open play, but he can sniff out a chance as well.
"And then he gets goals like the one against Fulham last season - fantastic goal. And he scored a screamer against us back in the day for Leicester."