Nick Pope's mentality is 'as solid as a rock', confirms Burnley boss Sean Dyche

The strength of Nick Pope's mentality is one of the reasons why Sean Dyche brought the goalkeeper to Turf Moor in the first place, confirmed the Burnley boss.

By Dan Black
Monday, 8th March 2021, 9:46 am
Updated Monday, 8th March 2021, 9:52 am

With Gareth Southgate due to announce his latest England squad in the coming days, the performances of players in contention to make the group are coming under greater scrutiny.

Pope is no different. The 28-year-old was beaten by Arsenal's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang at his near post at the weekend, which ultimately led to questions about his culpability.

Dyche, however, confirmed that his goalkeeper's mentality is 'as solid as a rock', adding that he possesses the strength of character to accept responsibility and move on.

Bukayo Saka of Arsenal shoots past Nick Pope of Burnley during the Premier League match between Burnley and Arsenal at Turf Moor on March 06, 2021 in Burnley, England.

He said: "Before it reached Popey we threw a lazy leg at it, we didn't have that sort of urgency we needed and with the top level Popey is at now he'll be questioning himself in detail.

"He's at the top, top level, there are no two ways about it, so when you're at his level, he'll be thinking he can get a stronger hand to it, even though he does get a strong hand on it.

"It's one that he'd normally save, in his opinion, because he gets a good enough hand on it. His mentality is as solid as a rock and that's a massively important thing for a goalkeeper.

"It was a soft moment from a top keeper, it wasn't a bad moment, but when you get to the level of these lads you shake things off really quickly."

Arsenal's Gabonese striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (top R) watches as his shot beats Burnley's English goalkeeper Nick Pope at his near post for the opening goal at Turf Moor in Burnley, north west England on March 6, 2021.

The Three Lions entertain San Marino at Wembley in a World Cup qualifier on March 25th before travelling to Albania for a Group I game just three days later.

England then round off their international schedule at home to Poland on March 31st. Dyche continued: "You've got to remember that I bought him and Tom Heaton here after they'd been relegated. The reason why I bought them here is because of that, because they've dealt with it.

"They've got on with it and even though their teams have been relegated their performances have stayed high and their belief stayed high.

"That's the make-up of top players. You've got to respond to anything that happens in the game and you've got to deal with it and focus on your performance. I thought Popey was excellent."