Matt Taylor has nothing but fond memories of working with Sean Dyche.

The ex-Claret made 39 appearances under the Burnley manager, scoring four goals, in a Turf Moor spell which saw him relegated from the Premier League before an immediate return to the top flight when winning the Championship in 2016.

Taylor now called time on his 20 years as a professional, last playing for Swindon before hanging up his boots at the end of the season. 

The 37-year-old has been reflecting on his career, including his stint with the Clarets.

“Working under Sean is intense and demanding, but incredibly honest and trustful. As a footballer you can’t ask for anything more than that,” said Taylor.

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“You want to go into work every day and work hard. What he talks about a lot is that you cannot flick a switch so you train as you play. 

"And he is not only demanding of you but of himself and the coaching staff. You’re all in it together and there are no egos. 

“Everybody is part of what is bigger than an individual.” 

Burnley were struggling during the Christmas period and found themselves in the bottom three of the Premier League, a run of form which would have seen some managers come under severe pressure. 

Taylor thinks Burnley’s loyalty to Dyche, through a relegation and tough spells in the top flight, has paid off, a revival in 2019 seeing them to safety with time to spare.

“What I really love about Burnley is that so many clubs dispense with their manager after getting relegated or enduring a season worse than they’d have liked," he told 888sport. 

“Yet they stuck by Sean. He’s an unbelievable manager but first and foremost he’s a great man. 

“He’s a very good leader and I like the way he talks and the solidarity he brings to a club. He’s not changed from when I was there to now.” 

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Taylor’s signature was sealed by a newly-promoted Burnley in the summer of 2014 - on a two-year deal from West Ham.

After featuring in the opening three games of the season, Taylor injured his Achilles - requiring surgery which kept him out until April 2015.
It meant he looks back on his time at Turf Moor with mixed emotions. 

“I loved it up there. It was difficult for me because after the first four to six games after signing I got injured and that was tough,” said Taylor.

“I was out for a longer period of time that both myself and my surgeon anticipated. 

"That was hard not to be able to help your team try and stay in the Premier League. 

“But, then the following year, we won the Championship.

“We were pushed all the way and we weren’t favourites to go up. If you asked me for my one memory of that season I’d say the togetherness of that squad.

“It was always about the group, not the individual, and regardless of whether you were playing or not each player had a specific role and an important role. 

"Everybody felt valued."

As for the present-day Clarets, Taylor is a keen admirer of fellow left-footer Dwight McNeil after his breakthrough campaign.

“Dwight McNeil has been a breath of fresh air," he said. 

"He plays with no fear and that’s a powerful thing. He looks to me like he’s really enjoying his football and he has a manager who believes in him. 

“He has a group of players around him who are extremely experienced at that level. They can help him out, the likes of Jack Cork alongside him. 

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“His job as a wide man is to get balls into the box and up top he has Ashley Barnes and Chris Wood who thrive on that. 

“He will have worked so hard to get his opportunity and he has grasped it with both hands which is great to see.”

Next season will be the Clarets’ fourth consecutive campaign in the Premier League. Taylor now sees the club as an established top-flight side and thinks their transfer business can now reflect this.

“Hopefully they will now be able to attract a better calibre of footballer for next season because if you asked me now ‘what are Burnley?’ the answer is they are an established Premier League club," he said.

“Sean has been very successful there and they have tried to build on that success year in, year out in a sensible manner within their budget. 

“And that’s what he has delivered. They enjoyed European football last season. He delivered another year of Premier League football. And they go again next season.

“I think Burnley can aim for the top 10. The main aspiration of any chairman outside of the top six is to stay in the Premier League because the riches are so huge now it is vitally important they retain their status. 

“So I’d imagine that’s the first thing the manager and chairman is thinking. But beyond that why can’t Burnley go on to have a successful season? 

“They’ve got some really, really good players and have a clear view of how they play. Each player is on board. So they can be successful. 

“But it’s all about building on what and who you are."

Read the full 888sport interview with Matt Taylor and his thoughts on how Burnley can build to become a top ten club