SEAN Dyche has hailed the 'connection' between captain Tom Heaton and the rest of the Clarets team as the Burnley boss' goalkeeper decision day approaches.

Heaton has started the last four Premier League games, keeping two clean sheets and helping the Clarets collect 10 points and move out of the bottom three.

Joe Hart, a summer signing, had started every top flight fixture prior to the home game with West Ham at the end of December but now finds himself on the bench.

And with Nick Pope, who was Dyche's No.1 for much of last season, now fit again the Clarets chief will soon face a tough decision.

Pope, who played in the FA Cup third round win over Barnsley earlier this month, and has featured twice for the Under-23s in recent weeks, could be given the nod for this weekend's cup tie at Manchester City.

With three England goalkeepers battling for one spot, Dyche knows that the he is going to leave two disappointed.

But it is Heaton who appears to be the man in possession of the shirt at the moment, at least in the Premier League.

"He has been good, there are no two ways about it," said Dyche in the wake of last weekend's 0-0 draw at Watford. "He has been calm, I always speak highly of him and the team in front of him has been good so I think there has been a good connection."

There has been speculation that one of the three keepers could leave before next week's transfer deadline day but Dyche is not fazed by the tough call on who to pick between the sticks.

"You have to make a decision, that’s my job," he said ahead of the FA Cup clash at champions Manchester City. "I’ll have to make more as we go forward.

“You can’t have too many good players, the dream for every manager is to have a lot of top players. Manchester City’s top is different to ours, but I think we’ve got some very good players at this club."

Heaton made a number of impressive saves in the goalless draw at Vicarage Road last time out, helping the Clarets to just a third away clean sheet of the season.

And that was something that delighted Dyche.

He added: "I was really pleased. I thought Tom deserved to keep a clean sheet because I thought the team in front of him was very good and when called into action he made a really good save in the first half.

"That was probably the only time they really opened us up in the first half and then second half, I haven’t seen it again, but I thought it was a foul in the build-up to the one he scrambled off the line."