It didn’t matter to the Burnley fans streaming out of Turf Moor that they had not seen a classic football match against Newcastle United on the fifth anniversary of Sean Dyche becoming their manager.
They were more concerned about another win, one which saw Dyche’s side move up to seventh in the Premier league with yet another 1-0 win.
Jeff Hendrick’s 74th minute goal, after he found himself unmarked at the back post, was the difference between the teams in a match more notable for the number of throw-ins than any quality.
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It came after Steven Defour dispossessed Ayoze Perez in midfield before Jack Cork’s shot was saved by Robbie Elliot. Johann Berg Gudmundson then lobbed the ball to the unmarked Hendrick.
“You have to get the wins any way you can,” Dyche said. “When you are us, you can’t go out every week and play fantastic, you have to fight for it.
“We’re not a recognised Premier League club yet, it doesn’t just take a couple of seasons. But we are looking more like one and we have made a good start.”
Dyche continues to be linked with the vacant Everton job. Burnley fans would be upset to see Dyche leave, a manager who arrived five years ago to the day when the team were mid-table in the Championship and steered them to two promotions, making Turf Moor a fortress in the process.
“I’ve had numerous anniversaries,” said Dyche, attempting to play down any significance. “Maybe a fifth anniversary is the new 25th? But respect has to be earned at all clubs and it has been earned here over a five-year period. It says we continue to work hard to progress.”
Newcastle have also made a good start to the Premier League season and would have gone sixth had they won, but they didn’t play like a side that wanted to win.
“We made one mistake, we were out of position and they scored," Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez said. "It was a game we were controlling and we knew that scoring one goal would win it.
"You have to be strong enough in defence and a little bit better in attack. We have to improve on everything, but I am happy with our work rate.”
Burnley have lost only two of 10 games, a record more remarkable given they have played and remained unbeaten against Chelsea, Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool.
Fans are delighted, but with every success they are more likely to lose their manager.