Burnley promoted to the Premier League: Sean Dyche enjoys promotion party after 2-0 Wigan win means ‘marvellous’ return
Sean Dyche masterminds promotion with two games to spare
Tuesday 22 April 2014
Sean Dyche, the Burnley manager, who led his side into the Premier League with this victory, vowed to enjoy the occasion before looking ahead to the harsh realities of next season in the Premier League.
Dyche will have a vastly improved budget, with promotion estimated to be worth £120m in increased revenue, but the odds will still be stacked against Burnley. Not that Dyche was letting that concern him on Monday night. He said: "Before you ask me about being written off next season, can we just enjoy today? That would be brilliant.
"It feels marvellous. We have reached our destination at the end of an impressive journey by a group of players totally committed to standing the test of this season.
"It's an incredible feeling, especially so early in my career. I'm still learning, still developing, so to guide a group to this achievement is a great feeling. To have 89 points with two games to go is a surprise, but we have been competitive in every game.
"I am proud of everything these players have done and everything they have given."
They were never in danger of slipping up on Monday. Michael Kightly, who scored a superb goal to ensure Burnley beat Blackpool on Friday, was again an influential figure against Wigan. The winger was involved early in a move that brought their opening goal in the 22nd minute when Dean Marney delivered a right-wing cross that Ashley Barnes met with a side-footed finish.
Kightly added Burnley's second goal two minutes before the break when he curled in a free-kick from wide on the left wing.
Michael Kightly of Burnley celebrates scoring his side's second goal in the 2-0 win over Wigan, a result that ensured their promotion to the Premier League
The goal was overdue as Burnley's domination had already produced chances for a second, but Scott Arfield, Barnes and David Jones were unable to find the net, while Wigan carved out one chance before the break. It came from Marc-Antoine Fortuné, who headed against the post.
The Wigan manager Uwe Rösler pushed players up alongside Fortuné at the start of the second half. It almost paid dividends when Fortuné fired against the legs of Tom Heaton. Either side of his chance Kightly fired wide and Danny Ings hit a post.
Barnes almost grabbed a second goal with a volley in the 80th minute before Burnley went on to start their promotion celebrations. Wigan still hope to join them because their healthy goal difference means another point from their final three games should secure a play-off place.
Burnley (4-4-2): Heaton; Trippier (Baird, 78), Duff, Shackell, Mee; Kightly, Marney, Jones, Arfield; Ings, Barnes. Substitutes not used: Cisak, Long, Treacy, Stanislas, Wallace, Edgar.
Wigan Athletic (4-3-2-1): Al Habsi; Perch, Boyce, Barnett, Crainey (Kiernan, 46); Collison, McArthur, Gomez (McManaman, 46); McClean (Maynard, 77), Beausejour; Fortuné.
Substitutes not used: Carson, Caldwell, Powell, Maloney.
Referee: K Stroud (Hampshire).
Goals. Burnley: Barnes 22, Kightly 42.
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