Vincent Kompany challenged his promoted Burnley side to clinch the Championship title and then try to break the record for the division’s highest points total.
The Clarets clinched promotion with a win at Middlesbrough on Good Friday, and two goals from Johann Berg Gudmundsson saw them beat second-placed Sheffield United on Monday night to leave themselves needing five points from the last six games to go up as champions.
Kompany, who celebrated his 37th birthday with the win over the Blades, hopes that could be achieved as early as next weekend, but said he does not want his team to let it rest at that.
He has his eyes on Reading’s record points haul of 106 – set in the 2005-06 season – and Burnley can beat that if they win all of their remaining games.
“If my maths aren’t wrong we could be champions next weekend if things go our way,” said Kompany. “To say that this could have happened with five games to go, I don’t think anyone would have hoped for it.
“It’s for us to set the bar even higher and see if there’s something beyond winning the trophy. Can we keep that consistency for the next six games?
“It’s funny that our next trip is to Reading. We have always got to look forward to something.
“I have two things in my mind – one is to make sure we allow the group to be part of the next six games. That’s how we got here, all the players have played a huge part this season.”
Burnley were helped by a red card for Blades goalkeeper Wes Foderingham for a foul on Nathan Tella after just 17 minutes, but Kompany was pleased with how his players dealt with that.
He said: “It can still be an awkward game against 10 men but you still have to do what we did, which was nullify the threat, keep control as much as we could, keep good possession of the ball and be dangerous in moments.”
Sheffield United manager Paul Heckingbottom had no complaints about the red card and made light of the angry exchange he had with Jack Robinson after substituting the centre-back, whose mistake led to the dismissal.
He said: “Fair play to Burnley, they have won and their fans have gone home happy, but everyone came excited for a good game. Our sense of disappointment in the dressing room is the fact that we couldn’t put on a performance.
“We know why we have lost, it’s our fault. We have made a mistake and compounded it with an error, committing the foul and the red card, which changed the game.
“If it had been in the box it would have been a penalty and a yellow card but it was outside. It looked like Tella was away, so it’s a red card.”
Robinson was sacrificed to bring on substitute goalkeeper Adam Davies and exchanged angry words with his manager as he walked back to the bench.
Heckingbottom said: “I know he was disappointed but he knows why I was angry. I don’t want an apology off any of them.
“Burnley have got what they want already and if they go on to become champions, good luck to them – our mind is on (the next game against) Cardiff.
“We would love to do it (win promotion) as soon as possible but the main thing is to get it done.”