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Dyche wants an end to Burnley carnage
SEAN Dyche admitted he has endured “three days of carnage” since defeat to Huddersfield Town.
As the number of games without a win stretched to six for Burnley, dreams of a play-off place grew even more distant.
Questioning what went wrong, the story and outcome of Tuesday night against the Terriers have not been far from Dyche’s mind.
But he is determined to put things right, and live up to the expectation levels that were raised by a new year run of three wins from four.
“In three months I think we’ve changed a lot here and it’s been pretty effective. Along with that comes expectation, and along with that comes my own expectation,” said the Clarets boss.
“I’m sure no-one thinks I don’t go home and think about things because it’s been three days of carnage in my brain . . . and it’s not that big!
“It’s been a tumble drier of experience and emotion, putting it all together, re-piecing it, adding all the things that we reflect on in order to get it right and in order for the team to havethe best chance to go and deliver.”
Dyche has not had the best of luck with injuries in recent weeks.
Ben Mee has been missing since early December, and in that time Charlie Austin has missed five games, Michael Duff the last four and Ross Wallace the last three.
None are expected back for tomorrow’s game at the Valley, where midfielders Chris McCann and Dean Marney could also be absent after limping off in midweek, although neither are feared to be long-term casualties.
But while Dyche would rather have all options available, he is ready to give others the chance to step up.
“Ideally you want clear minds and clear bodies ready to go and work,” he said. “They’re important players for us for sure but I made it clear it gives others an opportunity to play and play well.
“It’s in our hands to change that momentum. We want to get through these games and have a fresh group who are fit and ready to go right the way through to the end of the season, because it’s important to play hard in every game no matter what level of the season it is or what time of the season it is.”
He added: “There was no lack of effort the other night, or efforts on goal compared to the opposition, but we can’t govern ourselves by stats. We use them as a background measure.
“We have to make sure we stop it at one end and put it in the other and get back to winning ways.”
After meeting teams on tricky runs in their last two home games – against Middlesbrough and Huddersfield – Charlton’s spell of three straight defeats at the Valley offers an indication of how perilous and unpredictable the Championship is.
It is not for the faint-hearted or weak-willed.
Dyche is ready to separate the men from the boys.
“The other day I made it clear I felt it was unacceptable, but I must clarify the last 20 minutes really was the problem, because players didn’t play how I wanted them to play, they didn’t go and receive the ball and have that passion and drive to get the ball and deliver the quality that’s needed.
“That can happen when the crowd get restless and it can affect players.
“We’ve spoken about the freedom to go and perform, and that doesn’t change.
“I want the players to play aggressive football, forward-thinking football and win games.
“We’ve done well overall but we’re on an awkward run and it has to be addressed.”
Danny Lafferty insists the players are up for the challenge, and at least make amends for Tuesday’s loss.
“If we’re honest with ourselves it wasn’t us. It was a game we needed to get something out of and it definitely wasn’t good enough,” said the left back, who insists Burnley have not become a bad team overnight.
“I don’t see why we would be lacking in confidence because in recent weeks we’ve been playing well and putting in good performances albeit without getting the right results out of it. “It’s down to ourselves as a team. We’ve got ourselves into a bit of a hole here now and it’s only us that can get ourselves out of it. “There’s enough talent in that dressing room to do that.”
The Northern Ireland international added: “Everyone is disappointed in themselves and as a team. The games are coming thick and fast now and we’ll definitely be looking to bounce back at Charlton. “It’s a tough venue to go to, but we’ll definitely be looking to get back to winning ways. “It’s such a tight table you could find yourself in a bigger hole if we don’t turn this around and make the most of these games coming up. “We are going to have to dig deep as a team and individuals and get ourselves out of it.”
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