Sean Dyche warns Burnley against complacency
Sean Dyche will not be lulled into thinking Burnley have already gained a strong foothold in the Premier League.
As their campaign reaches its midpoint with Saturday's visit of Sunderland, the promoted Clarets are sitting in a healthy-looking 14th position with 20 points, six above the bottom three.
But while manager Dyche recognises his side are coping better than in their one-season top-flight spell of 2014-15, he is guarded against any complacency.
Dyche said: "I always say we're not the real deal. We know we have got to continue to use everything we have got to get points on the board. That's what our focus is on.
"The key word is reality - we don't do blind faith here. We know it's a tough challenge in the Premier League. We are playing some 'Super Bowls', as I call them, then there is a middle group and we're below that.
"We have played some very strong sides and managed to get points on the table against the odds but it must continue.
"You get to where we are now and most people would take that but it's an ongoing thing."
All bar one of Burnley's points have come at Turf Moor but Dyche does not want to over-emphasise the importance of home advantage ahead of their New Year's Eve outing.
He said: "I don't really go in for all that chatter. I go in for realities and that is you can find yourself being unbeatable if you're ready to perform.
"We target every game with the mindset to win, we focus on every game to get a performance that can give us what we want.
"But it is helpful that when we're at home we've got a strong crowd who get behind the team. That doesn't guarantee you anything but it gives you a better chance."
Burnley will hope to pick up further points against 18th-placed Sunderland at home before facing a tough trip to Manchester City on Monday.
The coming days will be a test of the Clarets' resolve but Dyche is not complaining about the schedule.
Dyche, who is without suspended midfielder Jeff Hendrick this weekend, said: "I don't get too flannelly about these things. The whistle blows get ready to play - simple as that.
"Re-energising is a big thing, your body only metabolises at a certain rate so to get the energy levels back up is important.
"But I'm not sure if it will ever change. I think fans like the Christmas period and outside the Premier League the chairmen like it from a business point of view."