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RESERVES: Better than any training session

23 March 2016

Burnley match reaction from United coach Lee Dykes

United coach Lee Dykes spoke to us about Tuesday’s reserve game at Burnley shortly after the full time whistle had blown on the 4-1 win.

“These games are always important because it gives the players the minutes they need,” he said. “They’re always better than any training session you could put on because they lads are out there and playing real football.

“It gives them a chance to show the manager what they can do and we told them before kick off to treat it as if it was the real thing. That lets the manager know they can do the job if they’re called upon. The pleasing thing is we saw some good performances.”

“First and foremost we have to acknowledge it was a very young Burnley team,” he commented. “We didn’t know that would the case until the morning of the game. You’ve still got to compete because they bring their energy and enthusiasm and they’re out to prove a point.

“Overall it was a good exercise and when you look at the surroundings at this football club you can see it’s a sleeping giant. It’s a Premier League club in the making and they do things right from top to bottom. We had a couple of our younger lads here with us and it’s good for them to see this kind of thing.”

Speaking about the quality of the goals scored, he said: “Bastien Hery scored a good goal and he does that day in and day out in training. We know what he can offer because he has a unique talent. 

“He can smash a ball with his left or right foot as well as anybody. I thought it was a really good performance from him. He did the right things and he simplified everything he was doing to make his contribution very effective.”

“With Louis Pedro, he is showing more of what he can do day by day,” he added. “He has that unorthodox drop of the shoulder and he’s another who can go onto his left or right side. 

“He scored last week with his right foot and this one was with his left. He’s a development project we want to see more of. He’s scored four goals in two games, which isn’t a bad start, but it’s one that can go either way. 

“He’s going to be given a chance with us so let’s wait and see how it goes. He’s certainly ready to do a job, but he now has to force his way into the manager’s plans.” 

“Overall we did the right things and there were some good patterns of play,” he said. “The players have played to their strengths, and lads like Alex McQueen and Patrick Brough came off the pitch without a bead of sweat on them, even though they’ve sprinted up and down the line all day. That’s crazy because they’ve put a huge amount of work in, so it shows where they are in terms of being ready.”

“It was another good run out for Martin Smith,” he told us. “I spoke to Martin after his debut on Saturday because there were a couple of points from that straight away he needs to work on. He has to understand he’s not playing U21 football any more. 

“He’s been on another learning curve today because he’s been robbed a couple of times and he cannot allow that to happen in a first team game. If it does we’ll be punished, and we’ll have nearly 5,000 fans who do not want to see that happen, and neither do we. At this level you find that if you’re not checking your shoulder and keeping it simple then you’ll get found out. It’s all part of the development process and he’s shown us other things which tell us he is going to be a very good player.”

And on another 45 minutes for fit again Antony Sweeney, he said: “I think Sweens is a fantastic professional. Any League Two team would want someone like him in their side. He gets goals and his work rate is second to none. 

“We’ve missed him since he’s been out injured. He’s back in contention now and, again, that’s why these games are so important because it gets lads like this back up to speed.”

Click HERE to view the United goals from the Burnley friendly on our YouTube channel.

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