‘Tis the season for rotation, apparently. At least it is for the rest of the Premier League.

For Burnley it’s business as normal. Sean Dyche has long derided the idea of rotation, the players need a rest, even over the festive schedule.

Dyche has made just 17 changes to his team this season, most of them enforced. Before the trip to Huddersfield that was 12 fewer than any other Premier League side. The continuity works.

Dyche named the same side that played at Old Trafford at the John Smith’s Stadium and the changes on New Year’s Day are likely to be minimal again, with perhaps the returning James Tarkowski the only fresh face.

The lack of alterations clearly doesn’t hurt the Clarets, who looked the better and the fitter side at Huddersfield.


This was a 10th clean sheet of the season for Burnley and Nick Pope, taking them level with the tally achieved in their previous two Premier League seasons under Sean Dyche.

But the most remarkable aspect of the brilliant defensive record this season is how the Clarets have performed against sides below them in the league.

They’ve now played 14 games against the teams from eighth to 20th and have conceding just four times in those fixtures.

Keeping the top six at bay in front of goal is always going to be a difficult task but Burnley’s defensive record against the rest is laying the foundation for their remarkable season.


This rise to seventh in the Premier League has arrived without a single penalty being awarded to the Clarets this season.

In fact Burnley’s last Premier League penalty arrived on April 15 when Sam Vokes scored at Goodison Park.

But the 26-game wait for a spot-kick really should be a thing of the past, with Jeff Hendrick clearly brought down by Jonas Lossl at the John Smith’s Stadium.

The Clarets have been on the wrong side of some debatable penalty decision recently against Arsenal, Brighton and Tottenham, and now they’ve been denied a clear one of their own.


Burnley might not have come away from Yorkshire with the three points they clearly so merited, but the game did at least highlight the gulf in class between the two sides.

On paper it’s hard to spot. Both games between these sides have now finished goalless this season but in front of their own fans Huddersfield barely mustered a threat to the Clarets goal.

It was a game dominated by Burnley and they showed why they’re currently the best of the rest in the Premier League and by a wide margin at that.


At the moment the Clarets can do no wrong. Even when they only pick up a point in a game they will feel they should have won they still manage to extend their advantage over the chasing pack for seventh of Leicester, Everton and Watford.

Any frustration at failing to put Huddersfield to the sword would have cleared by 5pm when Burnley saw that the three sides below in the table had all been beaten.

It could easily have been a different story, with Leicester ahead early on at Anfield, Watford still beating Swansea with just four minutes remaining and Everton on for a point at Bournemouth until the 88th minute.

But the cards fell kindly for the Clarets who now have a three-game cushion in seventh place.