Ashley Barnes has declared “I love it here” amid speculation linking the Clarets striker with a move elsewhere.
Following reports in January, suggesting that Aston Villa boss Steve Bruce was ready to make a move for the 27-year-old, the national press have now linked Barnes with Premier League newcomers Newcastle United, as well as Crystal Palace.
The former Brighton and Hove Albion forward, brought to Turf Moor in January 2014, still has two years left to run on his current deal, after signing a contract extension last summer.
Barnes made 28 appearances in the top flight this term, scoring six goals for the Clarets, to add to the five ne netted two seasons ago, making him the club’s joint Premier League top-scorer with Danny Ings.
And despite his efforts attracting interest from elsewhere, Barnes said: “I’m a Burnley player and I continue to keep playing for this shirt.
“It’s definitely a compliment.
“Everyone has been linked with someone, you don’t really read into it, but for me I’m a Burnley player.
“ I’ve got two years left and I love it here.
“My family are settled, so I’ll be back next year.
“I feel at home.
“It’s magnificent here, I love it.
“Playing week in week out at Turf Moor is brilliant.”
Barnes netted against Wigan Athletic at Turf Moor to help clinch promotion from the Championship three seasons ago.
And he returned from a serious knee injury suffered on the final day of the season at Aston Villa in 2015 to enjoy the celebrations as Sean Dyche’s side secured the title against Charlton Athletic at the Valley last term.
However, the striker believes that Premier League survival is the greatest achievement to date.
“Yeah, 100%,” he said.
“It’s better than anything else, apart from winning it like Leicester, but it’s a fantastic achievement and a credit to everyone.
“We set out our goal at the start of the season, and that was to stay in the Premier League, and that’s happened.
“You look at the teams around you – halfway through the season we looked at the teams around us and we thought we were better than a lot of them.
“The way it has panned out, we haven’t finished higher than most of them, but we’ve stayed in the division so that’s the main aim.”