Sean Dyche hails Burnley's flexibility after battling Villa draw
(Photo by Mick Walker - CameraSport via Getty Images)

Sean Dyche applauded his Burnley players for adapting to a fruitful change of shape in the second half of their 2-2 draw with Aston Villa.

Villa lead at the break courtesy of Anwar El Ghazi's goal.

But with Jack Cork struggling with an injury, Dyche took the opportunity at halftime to move away from the 4-4-2 shape with which his side has become almost synonymous.

Ashley Barnes moved out to the left, with substitute Jay Rodriguez, who bagged the first of Burnley's two equalisers on 68 minutes, lining-up on the right.

A plan in the works for a while

Asked about the tactical switch after the match, Dyche explained that he and his coaching staff had been experimenting over pre-season.

The summer arrival of Rodriguez, a more mobile and versatile forward than Barnes and Chris Wood, proved an enabler. 

And on Saturday the Clarets thrived in spite of their unfamiliarity with the system.

"We were debating changing our shape, we've changed it recently and we've had a look at it in pre-season," he told BBC Sport.

"We think we've got different personnel now, that we can change it.

"Sometimes when you change it, players look confused. They didn't, I thought they delivered a very strong second half."

'Superb' attitude also praised

Dyche admitted his frustration with the circumstances of Villa's first goal, the culmination of what he felt was too straightforward a counterattack.

But he was nonetheless pleased with the eventual point and saw the determination which characterised his players as the overriding positive.

"A lot of good qualities again from my side - that will, that relentless, never-say-die attitude," he said. "I thought that the mentality was superb."

The draw leaves Burnley in 10th place, with nine points on the board from their first seven matches.

They will be targeting a third home win of the campaign when they host Everton next Saturday.

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