SEAN Dyche is happy for Clarets fans to dream away as Burnley seek to move into the Champions League places with a win over Stoke City tonight.
But Dyche is keeping his own feet firmly planted to the ground, insisting he has to focus on the ‘reality’ at Turf Moor, despite the stunning start to the season.
A home win over Mark Hughes’ men would lift Burnley into fourth place in the Premier League – for 24 hours at least – after 17 games.
That rapid start to the campaign has got fans dreaming of European adventures and Dyche is happy for them to do just that, even if his own mind is staying firmly on the task in hand.
“Dreams are for fans, without doubt, that’s part of the magic of football. Reality is for managers, that’s what I think,” the Clarets chief said.
“Delivering what you can deliver is important, but you want dreams, to see your team giving everything and getting accolades and wins.
“That’s what fans want, and I think they’re really enjoying the journey of Burnley since I’ve been here, I don’t get many who question the whole thing.
“My job is to look at the realities, but the positive side of the realities.”
Dyche is delighted to see his own players looking more and more assured in the Premier League, with Burnley suffering just four defeats in their opening 16 league outings.
And Dyche highlights Leicester’s unlikely title success as the ‘possibles’ of what can be achieved against the odds.
“There is a challenge in the Premier League, it’s an unforgiving place, but the positive side is our players are getting more assured, growing and understanding it better,” he said.
“They’re delivering better performances.
“But you always want that, fans to be open-minded about the what ifs, the possibilities and probables.
“The possibles are what Leicester did, they kept a mindset of anything is achievable.
“That’s the beauty of the game.
“Man City have a probably chance of winning the league, but it doesn’t mean it’s a given, so all fans should carry on dreaming, but stick with it if there’s some tough times.”
Despite the dream start to the season and thoughts of a battle for a European place flickering into view Dyche doesn’t expect to find it difficult to keep feet on the ground inside the club.
“I don’t think so, I speak to enough Burnley people who are well aware of the complexities of the Premier League, they know it’s still a big challenge,” he said.
“What we’re doing is great and they’re enjoying it. Some of our fans will have only seen us in the last four seasons, three in the Premier League and one in a team which won the Championship, so their thoughts will be different to those who were here when we were selling Charlie Austin.
“But if you bring them together, I think there’s a pretty balanced view of it, certainly from the ones I speak to, what we are, what we’re trying to be, the fact we are moving forward, and the rest will take care of itself.”