Thursday 26 April 2018

Dyche eyes end to goals drought

Sean Dyche's Burnley have failed to score in over 500 minutes
Sean Dyche's Burnley have failed to score in over 500 minutes

Sean Dyche remains confident Burnley's goal drought will soon end as they bid to put a five-game goalless streak behind them at West Brom this Sunday.

The Clarets have failed to score in any competition since Scott Arfield's sumptuous opener against Chelsea in their first fixture back in the top flight, and they will head to The Hawthorns having not found the net in over 500 minutes.

Their attacking efforts have been further hindered by England Under-21 international Danny Ings joining strike partner Sam Vokes in the treatment room, with Dyche now unable to call upon the pair whose combined 47 goals last season fired Burnley to promotion.

However, Dyche is optimistic that the slack can be picked up elsewhere, despite a run of three successive 0-0 draws in the league.

"The incentive is to continue what we are doing but turn the performance level into wins," he explained.

"I have been pleased with the performance level. I think the players have adapted well to the challenge.

"It's that cutting edge and clinical finish that changes a game and we need that to come and there is another chance to do that on Sunday.

"I think the stats were 17 efforts on goal against Sunderland and nine on target, which shows we are heading in the right direction. You have to shoot to score and we are doing that."

With Ings and Vokes still some way off returning due to hamstring and knee problems, summer signings Lukas Jutkiewicz and Marvin Sordell will probably spearhead the Clarets' attack once more in the midlands.

Neither has opened their account since arriving at Turf Moor, but their boss believes the team is capable of scoring goals even without their two main marksmen.

"It's a great opportunity for others to come in and do well," Dyche added.

"Jutkiewicz has been excellent in the way he has gone about it. He needs that goal, like any other striker, just really to get him going.

"Marvin came in last week, (Ashley) Barnes is sitting waiting, George Boyd has got goals in him, we have got goals in Scott Arfield and we know we can score from other areas of the pitch.

"We will continue what we are doing, creating chances and make sure one goes in because when one goes in it often changes quickly. Keeping three clean sheets in the Premier League is a difficult task. It's building on that and making sure we win games.

"We are very close but we have to turn that closeness into reality. We are hungry to get that first win because we think that will lead on from there."

From week to week Burnley had the most settled starting line-up in the entire Football League last season, yet they already have a number of injury concerns.

Ings, Vokes and Matt Taylor, who has an Achilles problem, will all definitely miss out, while Kieran Trippier (groin), David Jones (thigh) and Dean Marney (hamstring) are nursing minor problems.

Loanees Michael Keane and Nathaniel Chalobah, who have yet to appear since their deadline-day switches, are among those waiting in the wings.

Press Association

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