Sean Dyche felt Burnley gave a good account of themselves in their 2-0 loss to Liverpool, praising their mentality and defending their approach.
Burnley competed well with Liverpool across the 90 minutes, but the hosts were too strong in the end. Goals from Diogo Jota and Sadio Mane swung the game in Liverpool’s favour. It means Burnley remain without a point from their first two games.
However, it is too soon for negativity, especially with the manner in which Dyche’s men conducted themselves.
Although Jurgen Klopp was far from happy with Burnley’s style, most felt the visitors performed well. Indeed, coach Dyche was content enough.
“It was a decent performance today. A tough place to come with the crowd in the stadium and the noise and feel,” he said (as transcribed by LancsLive).
“I thought the players handled that really well and we gave a very good account of ourselves, particularly in the first half.
“We gave them a soft goal, certainly from our point of view with the distances being wrong and not stopping the cross.
“We go in at half time in pretty good shape, the performance was good as I said, I thought we should have had a penalty on Dwight McNeil but we know our record on those.
“Second half we started brightly and the challenge is when you are one down you don’t want to go two. They scored on 60 minutes and it is tough because they had a good control on the game and we couldn’t break their rhythm and they grew.
“We finished really strongly as well. So I was pleased with the mentality.”
Although Burnley are yet to get a win this season, Dyche has seen an important vibrancy from their performances so far.
“They are a pretty good outfit so let’s be clear on that,” he said of Saturday’s opponents.
“Against Brighton we had a soft 10 minutes that cost us but there has to be life in your performance and I think there was at Brighton and there was today.
“We have got to tidy up the details, both ends, because we had chances again today and didn’t find a killer moment.
“There is certainly the right energy and feel about the group at the minute. Although we are limited in numbers again, particularly today.”
Dyche defends Barnes after two injury updates
Burnley became the first team in the 21st Century to field a starting lineup with all the numbers from 1 to 11 in a Premier League game.
Two of the players with higher squad numbers that they had to do without were Ashley Westwood and Matej Vydra.
Dyche does not think he will be without them for too long, though.
“We are not expecting either to be long and we don’t expect them to be too serious,” he said.
“Obviously they couldn’t play today. So we will wait and see a report on them on Monday.”
One of the players who came in for veiled criticism from Klopp for a physical game was Ashley Barnes. However, Dyche was happy with how his striker put himself about.
“I was pleased with him all through the show,” he said. “I thought he was a handful like he can be. He is an awkward customer, he was breaking the backline when he could.
“There were margins between him and Jay Rod[ridguez], who did well last week.
“I like that competitive feel of the front four; I think they can mix, combine and blend and certainly in the first 60 minutes I thought the two forwards well.
“In the first half I thought they were a handful and they gave us a good outlet when we needed it.”