EDDIE Howe is looking forward to the close of the transfer window, as he looks to keep his young squad together.
Howe is bracing himself for offers for the squad’s most sought-after talent, with top scorer Jay Rodriguez expected to attract interest between now and 11 p.m. next Tuesday.
And he also revealed he is unlikely to add any new faces on permanent deals, having used his transfer kitty to make Kieran Trippier and Ben Mee’s loan moves permanent deals.
On Friday, Howe brought in Millwall forward Josh McQuoid (below left) on a 93-day loan, with the former Bournemouth man making his bow as a half-time substitute in Saturday’s goal-less draw at home to Derby County.
McQuoid fills the void left by Sam Vokes’ return to Wolves, but Howe may yet move back into the loan market, as he is still without the injured Martin Paterson and Junior Stanislas – although Danny Ings is closing in on a return to full fitness.
Burnley have yet to have any approach for their players since the window opened on New Year’s Day, and having warded off moves for Rodriguez, Charlie Austin and Paterson before the close of the summer window, Howe hopes for a similar outcome.
He said: “I just want the window to shut really, personally. The earlier it does for me, the better.
“I think we’re done for permanent signings. I don’t think there is anything left for us to work with.
“There may be a loan depending on injuries, and if we need certain positions we might look to do it, but for permanent signings that will be it.
“The main thing is not losing anyone. We cannot afford to sell. We need to keep our squad together.”
With a lot of business often done on the final day of the window, matters are complicated, in that Burnley’s next game is next Tuesday at Nottingham Forest, so Howe will be focused on that fixture, rather than manning the phones up to 11 p.m.
And Howe hopes the break – due to Burnley exiting the FA Cup – will prove useful. He said: “With the injuries we’ve got creeping in now, it will be a case of giving them a rest over the week and making sure we come back against Nottingham Forest all systems go.
“Ross (Wallace) had a back problem that he couldn’t shake off at half-time, so we had to adapt.
“Hopefully, it’s nothing serious. We don’t really know the reason behind it.”
It also gives McQuoid chance to bed in after his move north. Howe said: “I think Josh got better as the half went on against Derby. We have to take into account he hasn’t played a lot of football for a period of time.
“He’s a talented lad. I think he showed us towards the end of the half what he’s capable of, and the beauty is he can play left, right and up front, so he’ll only get better the longer he’s with us.”
Keith Treacy got the nod to start in place of Stanislas, with Zavon Hines on the bench, and Howe hopes to see more of his undoubted ability: “Being a left footer and having a vacancy on the left side, I think it was always going to be Keith. He’s got so much talent we’re waiting for him to explode on to the scene.
“I think he showed glimpses of what he’s capable of. We perhaps didn’t get him into the game enough, and in the end we just wanted to reshuffle and go with three in midfield, to try to find the goal.”