Anglo-Saxons, Celts and Picts at Turf Moor.
Burnley manager Sean Dyche and his newly formed recruitment team have been unusually active and effective in readiness for the new challenges that lay ahead in the imminent English Premier League campaign.
The arrival of the more “exotic” and allegedly more technically gifted foreign players for the Turf Moor club still seems however, to be not too hot on the Dyche agenda. The Burnley gaffer is widely known for his no-nonsense, high work rate, high pressing game, played in his favoured 4-4-2 formation and it looks like that is how it is going to stay.
The simple fact is that Sean Dyche’s Clarets are built around a selection of Anglo-Saxon, Celt and Pict heritage soccer warriors. The Burnley staring eleven for the opening encounter with the current Premier League Champions Chelsea is likely to include Eire internationals, Stephen Ward, Kevin Long, Jeff Hendrick, Robbie Brady, and recent signing from Stoke City Jonathan Walters.
These famous five are likely to be soon joined by the experienced, veteran Republic of Ireland goalkeeper Shay Given; it is little wonder the Eire national team boss Martin O’Neil is seriously considering the benefits of purchasing a season ticket at Turf Moor!
Add to the mix a strong cartel of English home grown talent which includes the likes of England goalkeeper and club captain Tom Heaton, Matt Lowton, Ashley Westwood, Ashley Barnes, Nottingham born Tendayi Darikwa, Charlie Taylor, Jack Cork, Andre Gray, Nick Pope, Scottish/Canadian Scott Arfield and Welsh international striker Sam Vokes and it is easy to see just where Sean Dyche is coming from.
It is obvious that Dyche is building the foundations of the Claret’s first team on the merits of players with a British or Irish heritage. Dyche has put enormous faith in home country talent and that faith has been both justified and rewarded with two promotions from the Championship, one single relegation and up to date a one season survival in the English Premier League.
Even the present two “foreign” players at Turf Moor can hardly be described as “exotic”. Icelandic international Johann Berg Gudmundsson and the supremely gifted Belgian midfield maestro, Steven Defour both have strong northern European DNA that is extremely compatible with the rest of the British and Irish contingent, plying their trade under the watchful auspices of the gravelly voiced Burnley supremo Sean Dyche.
Loose and rather fanciful media speculation has recently linked the Clarets to a player from Spanish La Liga side Eibar, the Argentinian midfield Gonzalo Escalante was reported to be on his way to joining Burnley. Escalante need not start packing his suitcases anytime soon!
This speculative rumour is now known to be without foundation and Dyche has by all accounts reverted to type and is looking to add Stoke City’s 32 year old former Claret full back Phil Bardsley into the Burnley squad. It now looks highly extremely likely the former Manchester United player Bardsley will be reunited with his former Potteries colleague Jonathan Walters at Turf Moor, in yet another knock down fee.
This seems to be the Sean Dyche/Burnley way. Forget the exotic and rely on the stoic “British Bulldog” in your faces style of play. One thing is for certain; Turf Moor in the midst of an English winter will be no place for the “Fancy Dan” style of foreign players who relish playing the beautiful game. Fix bayonets! (TEC).