Burnley FC boss has ‘money to spend’

Burnley's Ashley Barnes. ''Photographer Chris Vaughan/CameraSport''Football
Burnley's Ashley Barnes. ''Photographer Chris Vaughan/CameraSport''Football

Clarets boss Sean Dyche goes into the transfer window with money to spend – and he intends to use it.

Burnley, after a second Premier League campaign, and prudent financial management, have funds available to bolster the squad in January, though Dyche admits it is “not a bottomless pit.”

The thing that has changed in the market in my experience, is straightforward deals aren’t straightforward, some clubs are active like agents, and if we go in for a player, they let other clubs know we’re in for them.

Sean Dyche

Plans are already in place to bring in new faces, and ahead of the window opening on New Year’s Day, Dyche said: “I make it clear to everyone, there is money available.

“It’s not a bottomless pit, wages are still a challenge, when you talk about your real big market players that is, so we still have to careful with that one.

“But we’ve moved a long way in two years financially, and what we can do has moved a long way, even with the training ground, changes at the ground and all that.

“We still have a pot available, and if the right players comes along, we will activate.

“There are certain situations we are already on with, but that depends on the other club rather than us.”

However, the January window is notorious for business going right down to the wire, and Dyche may have to be patient: “I think, not by the nature of us as a club, the nature of the January window, it’s infamous for being fraught with deals trying to get done, and then going lastminute.com

“That’s just the nature of the window.

“There are already certain situations we’ve tried to open up, we’ll see if they develop further.”

Burnley were able to land Ashley Barnes from Brighton just after the window opened two years ago, but Dyche explained: “Barnesy was an historic transfer we’d tried in the summer. Brighton had injuries after getting to the point where they wanted to do the deal, and that then broke the deal down.

“Unusually, I must say for this day and age, all parties then honoured that deal, when it came around again. The player still wanted to come, his agent and Brighton wanted it to happen and we went, okay then.”

Barnes is currently out as he recovers from cruciate and medial knee ligament damage, but he and Lukas Jutkiewicz could potentially return before the season is over, and that could alter Dyche’s planning: “The strange conundrum we have is in terms of the long-term injuries, that kind of plays a part.

“Barnesy, in a true run of of progress, will get fit at some point this season, Juke unlikely, possible but improbable.

“If Barnesy then came in fit, say you also go in in January, you could all of a sudden go from a thinner group to a swollen group of strikers. I’d love as many strikers as I can. most clubs would, but not so many they aren’t getting any feel of the game at all.

“On the other hand, we are in the market all over the place, we want true demand, and that is comes when it comes down to business, so if one did come in, one goes out etc, but we’re looking at players in first, and then the possibility of things going out.”

Burnley were frustrated in the January window last time out, only able to turn Michael Keane’s loan into a permanent deal, and Dyche mused: “The thing that has changed in the market in my experience, is straightforward deals aren’t straightforward, some clubs are active like agents, and if we go in for a player, they let other clubs know we’re in for them.

“They often phone three other clubs or tell the press, so it’s become hard on that point.

“January starts, you do your business appropriately, you speak to the club, the agent, the player, and when you think a deal is coming, a week goes by, two, and you’re saying ‘are we going to do this or not?’, and really they are playing the game.

“That’s some clubs, and agents do that, depending on whether you are their number one choice.

“If you are, no dramas. If there are three or four, of they promote those choices - and most clubs spin plates and delay situations - it’s very complex, way more than people think, unless you have the magic fat chequebook.

“It’s so frustrating.”