Sport Soccer

Thursday 27 October 2016

Sean Dyche backs Burnley to punch above their weight at Chelsea

Published 26/08/2016 | 22:36

Sean Dyche, pictured, admits Antonio Conte has an embarrassment of riches at Chelsea
Sean Dyche, pictured, admits Antonio Conte has an embarrassment of riches at Chelsea

The disparity in Premier League riches is likely to be evident to Sean Dyche when he looks at Chelsea's bench this weekend, though it will not stop him believing Burnley are capable of getting another result at Stamford Bridge.

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Antonio Conte's 100 per cent start at the helm owes much to his substitutes, with £33million signing Michy Batshuayi playing a key role in a pair of cameos from the bench, while World Cup winner Cesc Fabregas' introduction helped swing last weekend's clash at Watford in their favour.

It is players of such pedigree that have convinced Dyche Conte's side will be back in championship contention this year after a shock campaign when they finished 10th in their title defence.

However, Dyche insists those illustrious names will also matter little to Burnley's players once kick off comes, as they proved last week in defeating Liverpool 2-0 at Turf Moor.

"You turn around and it's, 'Come on then, Cesc, get yourself warmed up'," Dyche said of Conte's options.

"It's not a bad position to be in! There lies the truth, or the gap, in the Premier League.

"Out there playing, that means nothing; it's 11 players against you and you have to remind yourself of that, and the players do, they'll take on the responsibility of dealing with that.

"When you look at the players they've got and depth of squad, it's highly unlikely they won't be up among it, so that's a big challenge for us.

"We know that's not our league, but the magic of football means you can still get results. We have to formulate a team, rather than individuals, and that team has to deal with what's coming at you, and be productive and go and score goals."

They scored twice against Jurgen Klopp's Reds last Saturday, even though they only enjoyed a share of 19 per cent possession, and Chelsea will expect to see plenty of the ball in their own stadium.

Dyche is just fine with that, provided the Blues fail to break his team down, as he thinks a counter-attacking style is becoming increasingly effective in modern football.

"The difference is teams are now playing more football away from the goal," explained Dyche, whose team drew 1-1 at Stamford Bridge two years ago.

" They have a lot of possession and are not always looking to penetrate, or trying to penetrate by keeping the ball and making the opposition lose their shape.

"You've got to know when to press, that's the secret. We pressed well for the first goal, and the second with the breakaway.

"The knowledge base is when to press, and how to work on transition. I said three years ago transition is the future of football, not because I had a crystal ball, but I felt that was how the game was going - how quickly you can turn attack into defence, defence to attack.

"I spoke many times about that need for transition - but obviously, I'm Sean Dyche!"

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