Burnley boss Dyche turns attention to Birmingham
12:00pm Wednesday 12th March 2014 in Sport
THE post-derby celebrations have barely died down in Burnley, but for Sean Dyche it is business as usual.
While Clarets fans bask in those long-awaited bragging rights, the manager, his staff and players immediately set to work on the next game.
Dyche recognises the enormity of what happened on Sunday; what it means to him, the team and of course the supporters. But he won’t rest on it.
The fast pace of football and an action-packed programme in March – continuing with tonight’s game at Birmingham City – won’t allow for that, not to mention his own standards.
The euphoria will not become a distraction to Burnley, he says, because he wants more to come.
“We’ve got another big game coming very quickly in Birmingham so it’s business as usual really,” said Dyche.
“Of course it (the derby win) means a lot – it means a lot to the fans. We’re not naive to that, we understand it.
“The noise after the second goal and the final whistle was unbelievable.
“They certainly enjoyed Sunday, for obvious reasons. Long may it continue. We want to keep progressing and keep working hard and see where the journey takes us this season.
“I’m very proud as the manager to manage the team in breaking that record after 35 years, and now we're unbeaten against them in four so there's maybe a twist on the stats.
"I'm very proud of the players. I have been ever since I came here but certainly this season, for obvious reasons, but there still loads of work to be done and it's important that we remain focused on the next game. It really is that simple.
"I do understand the town and the people enjoying the moment. When you add in the years of not beating them then it adds more strength to the occasion, and the challenge was great of course - away from home going 1-0 down and then to turn it around. Yet again it showed the mentality of the players we have here, the will and desire to do well. They're fantastic attributes to have, and we've delivered it many times. But SO FAR we've done well, there's still a lot more football to be played.
"I understand that it means so much to so many people and we're pleased to have delivered that performance in order to get that goal for so many people to enjoy.
"Our job is to enjoy it but see through it and know that there's another game coming."
He added: "Football goes on. I know must of the Burnley fans probably wished that it had stopped there and then, after the final whistle - or after about 24 hours of celebrating. But football does go on.
"It's a real feather in the cap for myself, the team, the club. But there's another big game coming and we've got to make sure we're focused on that, which we will do.
"There's an important game just around the corner and it is Birmingham."
Dyche is set to name an unchanged team for the ninth game in a row when they take to the field at St Andrew's.
They go into it buoyed by a 12-game unbeaten league run, with wins in all bar one of the last six of those to go eight points clear of the play-off positions in second place.
In stark contrast Birmingham have While the statistics and odds are stacked in the Clarets' favour, Dyche will not read anything into them.
"We never underestimate anyone. I've made that clear all season," said the Burnley boss.
"I understand the demand of every club in this division and everyone's thirsty for those three points.
"We have to show that again. We have to go and deliver a really strong performance again because Birmingham won't lay down.
"It's important we focus on the job in hand, which I'm sure we will.
"You have to be ready for anything that's thrown at you. Overall Lee's had some challenges there off the pitch and there are still some challenges there. He's had to flex his group, manipulate his group and use it as wisely as he can.
"They've had up and down result, obviously at home they've found it tough at times. But you can't rely on that as something that makes the game work in your favour, you have to go and earn the right."
Dyche added: "I tell the players all the time that football owes them nothing, you have to earn whatever you get in every moment of every game. We've had that mentality and it's been quite clear to see. It's essential that we continue to keep working on that mentality and the next one is Birmingham, as soon as that whistle blows.
"We have to continue to progress and keep pushing the boundaries and keep forcing the issue by playing well and keep delivering every game."
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