SEAN Dyche believes starting last season July had an effect on his players and the way they prepared for the Premier League campaign.

Burnley's seventh place finish in 2018 ensured the club would embark on their first European adventure for over 50 years as they entered the qualifying rounds of the Europa League.

The Clarets' pre-season was cut short as they faced Aberdeen on 26th July in a season that totalled 47 competitive matches for Dyche's side.

"In the Championship you get 46 plus your cup games, so it’s probably 50-odd. I think it probably has; you start the competitive season in July," said Dyche.

"You’ve got to remember pre-season is important and you still want to win, but it feels different. You can’t make it a first team game, a pre-season game.

"We had real games and it’s weird, it mixes with the psychology. I would never have gone through that, so it is different.

"That this season would have more of a normal feel. You know most of us deep down like to be normalised, we don’t really want many changes.

"Most people want normality and when that goes out the way a little bit, it alters the way you act and the way you conduct yourselves."

Burnley's 47 matches last season is the most they have faced in recent years - the 2017/18 season began on 12th August and finished with the Clarets playing a total of 41 games.

The season before that, Dyche's men played four games less than last season with their competitive season beginning on 13th August.