A final day defeat was a disappointing way to end a memorable season for Burnley, but as Sean Dyche said the pain will soon fade as the scale of the achievement of Premier League survival sets in.

It's been an incredible campaign and had you offered the Clarets safety with something to spare and a last day showdown with nothing riding on it back in August then there'd have snapped your hands off.

As is the way in the modern world the questions of where this achievement ranks comes next. Better than last season? Better than 2013/14?

You'd have to say it probably is the best yet under Dyche, given what Burnley have had compete against. Staying up is no easy feat, as Middlesbrough and Hull City, who return to the Championship wounded from their time in the Premier League, can attest to.

The fact survival has been secured with relative ease has perhaps meant the Clarets haven't quite got the praise they deserve. There hasn't been a moment when it was done, like with promotion or winning the title, and there wasn't a late surge to safety. Instead it was a steady accumulation of points, especially until February, that has done the job.


Football never stops. As one season ends the planning begins for another, especially in the Premier League. In six weeks time Burnley will be back for pre-season and ready to go again. It's not much of a rest, especially for those internationals in the squad who will be playing into June.

It could be a big couple of months off the pitch as well. It will be interesting to see just how this squad changes before the first ball is kicked in 2017/18.

The big issue for now is who will need replacing. Michael Keane is almost certain to go and George Boyd's contract is up, with no new deal agreed yet.

It would be a surprise if Steven Defour's spell at Turf Moor extended to a second season given how his first has gone, while doubts also remain over Andre Gray's future, with the striker yet to extend his contract beyond next summer.

It could be a busy summer at Burnley and if there is significant squad turnover at Turf Moor then it could be a crucial one as well.


Sunday brought another change of approach in attack from Sean Dyche and it is noticeable this season how often he has rotated Sam Vokes, Andre Gray and Ashley Barnes.

The three frontline strikers for the Clarets have all started between 20 and 26 Premier League games and have taken it in turn forming partnerships, with Dyche often opting for a horses for courses approach.

It doesn't seem to have harmed any of the trio, who have all had good seasons and contributed to the cause when they've been in the side.

Barnes' return of six goals doesn't tell the full story and his presence in disrupting opposition defences always helps his strike partner and he created space for Gray when they were partnered together.

Gray can be happy with his first season in the Premier League, and an eventful one at that, but it is Vokes who has stolen the shown in recent weeks, ending the season with a flourish as he bagged five goals in five games to take his tally to 12.

The Welshman has looked a handful in recent weeks and only Christian Benteke has won more aerial duels this season, and the Crystal Palace frontman has played 1,000 more minutes than Vokes.