George Boyd believes that the number of players absent from training during the international break is a clear indication of the club’s progression.
While Tom Heaton, Stephen Ward, Johann Berg Gundmundsson, Steven Defour, record signing Jeff Hendrick and striker Sam Vokes were all involved in their nation’s opening World Cup qualifying fixtures, Scott Arfield featured for Canada in their CONCACAF qualifiers for the tournament in Russia.
“We’ve had a great 10 days training even though there hasn’t been as many numbers as usual,” said Boyd.
“It’s been great, lots of fun and lots of hard work. It’s been a good 10 days together and obviously the internationals have come in over the last couple of days.
“The more internationals we’ve got the better we’re doing as a club so long may that continue.”
Meanwhile, the winger feels that the Clarets are now more equipped for the top flight following the recent recruitment drive. Boss Sean Dyche, who added Tom Pope, Gudmundsson and Liverpool’s Jon Flanagan earlier in the summer, has since added Defour from RSC Anderlecht, Hendrick from Derby County and Patrick Bamford on loan from Chelsea.
“It’s great from the outside because people still see us as a small club and we’re spending big money,” he said. “In the building it’s great to get that quality of player in and it can only improve us. Hopefully we can keep continuing to improve.
“The gaffer wants that. It’s not a massive Premier League squad but everyone is ready to go in the XI when needed which is great. You’ve got 16/17 players all trying to get a first XI shirt.
“You can see the quality of the squad and the strength in depth compared to last time. It is massive.”
Hull City are today’s visitors to Turf Moor in the Premier League and Boyd is expecting a tough test against his former employers. Despite limited resources within the dressing room at the KC Stadium, current managerial incumbent Mike Phelan has guided the Tigers to six points from three Premier League games having replaced Steve Bruce.
“He’s done a really good job and after speaking to the boys they seem to really like him,” said Boyd. “The training is good and they’ve obviously had a good start so he’s likely to get the job.
“There’s a few problems off the field but in their building there’ll be none of that. There’ll be tight knit and they’ll be looking forward to the game.”
He added: “They’re obviously favourites to go down but on the first game of the season they put a great performance in against Leicester. They won’t be worried about all the outside noise.
“They probably have that mentality of ‘everyone has written us off so who cares’. There’s no pressure on them and that’s shown in the first few games. Everyone has written them off but they’ve put in some very good performances.”