No rest for running man Boyd

Running man George Boyd won’t be asking boss Sean Dyche for a rest any time soon.

Wednesday, 4th March 2015, 8:17 am
George Boyd

Boyd is aiming to help Burnley earn a first win in seven Premier League games at Anfield, having started every game since arriving in a club record-equalling £3m move from Hull.

The Scotland international has become renowned for his hard work, having recently been found to have covered four of the top six distances in top-flight games this season.

The Clarets come up against Liverpool tonight, with Philippe Coutinho back in the side after missing last Thursday’s Europa League exit havibg been rested after starting 19 successive games, while in October, Raheem Sterling was left out of the England team in Estonia because, according to Roy Hodgson, he was “a little tired”.

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George Boyd

Boyd sympathises with Sterling, but admits he probably wouldn’t ask boss Sean Dyche for a rest!: “I don’t think he’d let me have one anyway!

“But none of us need one, I think we’ve only got three games this month, and you get a lot more rest in the Premier League - it’s not Saturday, Tuesday like the Championship, you usually get a week between games and a full week’s training so no one needs a rest.

“Raheem’s different, he’s playing Champions League and for England, so each to their own.”

Burnley have topped the physical statistics in the Premier League this season, and Boyd feels their fitness factor could play a big role in the final 11 games of the season: “I think since Christmas we’ve noticed. Newcastle away, even games where we’ve not quite got the three points, we’ve been on top of teams in the last 20 minutes.

George Boyd looks to take the ball away from Chelsea star Oscar

“It happened a lot last season in the Championship, and there’s not as many games this season.

“It’s that relentlessness of wave after wave of attack, even if we have to defend we have the fitness to get back and go again on the counter.

“I think it’s definitely an advantage, we’re the fittest team in the league and we’re getting stronger when other teams are tiring. I’ve no doubt it will have an impact on games because we’ll be running over teams.”

The Clarets are in need of points to climb out of the bottom three, but have held Chelsea, Manchester City and Manchester United this season, and beaten Southampton, and Boyd is confident they can upset Liverpool: “We’ve shown all season, we’ve gone to the top two and got results, and we drew with Man United and battered them at Old Trafford, so we’re full of confidence we can go to these places, turn in good performances and get points.

“We’ve grown throughout the season, we had the bad start, but we have that confidence now that we can go to Anfield - not many of us have been there, but we can go and enjoy it and get points.

“This is why you get promoted and play in the Premier League to play at grounds like Anfield.

“There’s no pressure, we can go there and play our own game.

“They’re on a great run, with players in form, but when we played them at home, I’d have been disappointed with a point, never mind losing the game, so we’ll take confidence from that and hopefully cause them some problems.”

Dyche encourages that fearless attitude, as Boyd explained: “Not many of us have played at this level before and we’re able to just go out and enjoy it, there’s no pressure on us, apart from what we put on ourselves, we just go out and try and get the three points.

“You can either be overawed or try and embrace it and the mindset of this squad is to embrace it and enjoy it.

“That comes from the top - every team talk is positive, to express yourself and go out and enjoy the occasion.

“I think we went to Arsenal and maybe sat off more than we usually do and it didn’t really work, so we’ve played our own game and it’s working brilliantly.

“Teams aren’t used to it, Chelsea hated it.

“The top teams are used to having it their own way, passing it around at the back, and we’re pressing high and not giving them much time on the ball and it works in our favour.”