By 90Min
February 23, 2018

Burnley manager Sean Dyche expects to have several key players return to his set up as he looks ahead to the business end of the season.

The Clarets have been superb for most of the term, holding on to the seventh spot on the Premier League table for some time, despite being hit by various injuries.

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They haven't been able to win any of their last 10 league matches, but the coach is feeling positive after two weeks off and a training trip to Portugal which has left him with a huge injury boost.

"The group is coming back together," Dyche told Sky Sports. "Chris Wood got 70 minutes, so he is back in the thinking. That was by design by the way, no problem with that. We took him off after 70 minutes to make sure he is building his way back to true fitness.

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"Dean Marney got 90 minutes under his belt, which is good," he added. "Stephen Ward also got 90 minutes the other day, which means he is even closer to full fitness."

There are also concerns over keeper Tom Heaton. Yet Nick Pope, the Clarets' stand-in stopper has been quite the revelation this season, while the main man has gotten down to business in an indoor friendly just recently.

"Tom's main thing is for him to get fit, he knows that and I know that," Dyche added.

"He has been out a while, he has done very well with his rehab and so have the medical team, and now it is about true fitness, about timing, getting your eye in, reminding yourself of your game awareness and all the things that add into a goalkeeper's performance.

"He is not under any pressure to be considered at the moment. He is a very bright professional. He understands he has got to be right. He is old enough and wise enough to know when he is really on it. He is in a good place, he is enjoying being out there every day."

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