'The Royal Dyche': Burnley pub promises to change its name if Clarets qualify for Europe
The Princess Royal has pledged to change its name to 'The Royal Dyche' in honour of the Clarets' much-loved manager should the club secure a place in the Europa League this season after a barnstorming start that has propelled the Turf Moor side to sixth in the Premier League.
Despite having avoided relegation by just seven points last year, Burnley have started this season in much-improved form, which has seen them claim famous wins against the champions Chelsea and away at Goodison Park against Everton, and earning draws against the big-hitting Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool sides.
The club's stellar start has seen Sean Dyche's team climb above a much-vaunted Spurs side to sixth in the table, leading the Clarets faithful to dream of a fifth-place finish and a position in the Europa League, which would constitute the club's first soiree into European football since the 1960–61 season when they played in the European Cup.
In response to the team's success, The Princess Royal pub - located on Yorkshire Street barely five minutes' walk away from Turf Moor - have promised to pay homage to their larger-then-life boss by renaming the establishment after him should the club achieve the unthinkable and make it into the Europa League.
"The pledge to change the name is genuine," said Landlady, Justine Lorriman. "We've been doing so well and Dyche has previously said that he might call in for a pint and he's not been in, so we're just trying to get his attention because we really do want him to come in for a drink!
"If he came in, I'd be speechless for one, I don't know what I'd do," added Justine, who also promised Dyche free drinks at the potential 'Royal Dyche'. "I'm a massive Burnley fan - a season ticket holder - and it's like being on cloud nine with the run we're on at the minute. It's unbelievable what he's doing."
When asked about the pub's proposal in a recent press conference, a visibly amused Dyche - who joined Burnley from Watford in 2012 - said: "Well, I never; I haven't seen that. That's the only reason I'd do it [qualify for the Europa League] then!"
Far-fetched as the European dream may seem, the average number of points required by the team finishing fifth over the past 10 seasons has been 67. Having claimed 25 points from their opening 14 games, Burnley are averaging 1.8 points per game. To claim the remaining 42 points to reach the coveted 67-point mark for the season, The Clarets would need 1.75 points per game over the remaining 24 games.
"I honestly don't think he realises how much he is worshiped by people in Burnley," Justine said of Dyche. "He's made a big impact. I get that the players go out and do their jobs, but he gets the best out of them.
"He's a regular topic of conversation for our customers and people say how they appreciate him," she added. "It's nice that the team proves everyone wrong, because we get written off every season in the Premier League as the underdogs, so it's nice to be up top and doing well.
"We still need to be grounded, and we'll get the odd defeat, but I'd push for Europa," said Justine. "That would be the next stage. When there was speculation about Dyche leaving, a lot of us said he's done as much as he possibly can with Burnley, but you only need to look at Leicester winning the league to give you hope."