That resilience and mentality has stayed firm
In form Burnley took the three points yesterday at Brighton, a team currently having a difficult time, which left their manager Chris Hughton believing things are just not going their way.
After he saw two former Brighton players score the goals against his side, he said: “We created chances and they needed some very good saves from a top class goalkeeper to keep them in the game. But we’ve conceded three goals, and that isn’t like us.
“I think that was very much the story of the game. We were up against a Burnley team that play a particular way and do it very well. They’re also in very good form and that showed today. We should have had a penalty at 2-0, but they go straight up the other end and score. It was that type of game. It was a blatant penalty that either the linesman or referee has got to see.
“What also showed was that in front of goal, at those pivotal moments, we perhaps need to take our chances, and we weren’t able to do that. If one of those goes in, then it probably would have been a different story, but it’s just not going our way at the moment.”
He added: “The gap below us was always the one that was going to be more important. Perhaps when others were getting a little carried away, we were very conscious about how difficult this league is. As quickly as you can win three games on the spin, you can lose them or get into difficult periods, and we’re aware of that.
“It’s a period that we’re going through at the moment and the games we’ve got coming up are against teams that are not in the top six. We need to dust ourselves down and start getting points on the board again. It’s been a very difficult day for us, but one that I felt we could have got more from.”
He continued: “It was a very, very mixed first half of the season and since then we’ve been very, very strong with good performances. Ian Holloway said a few years ago that he always thinks we’ve got a strong jaw. We’ve taken a few knocks along the way this year, but that resilience and mentality has stayed firm and I’m proud of the players for that. Now they’re getting their rewards for coming back together, for re-aligning and delivering performances.
“We’ve just had four of the last six games away from home and taken eight points, so that’s a good return. But we know there’s a lot of work to be done. We’re not naïve. We’ve worked hard to get to where we have and we need to continue doing that.”
By the time we kicked off, we’d dropped into the bottom three because of Cardiff’s win at Southampton. “They know what the other results were today, but they were focused on the performance and they deserve a lot of credit for that,” Dyche added. “It’s a tough place this. They started well and Tom had to be on his toes and made some important saves at important moments.
“We have to find different ways of winning and today we found a different way by defending diligently, doing the basics right and being clinical. We’ve defended and countered and done it really, really well.”
And another penalty, and perhaps we got away with one. “I suggested the stats would correct themselves over time,” Dyche said on that. “If you go 67 games without a penalty, there is a fair chance you’re going to get another one quite quickly, and if it was ever going to go to anyone, then Ashley Barnes deserved it. We know what happened last week and he slotted it nicely.
“They had a shout for one and that’s the way it goes. We haven’t had key decisions go for us lately. We’ve had three draws which involved key decisions. Well, if we got one back today that’s the balance, and that’s what I spoke about. You hope over a season it balances out.”
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