Clarets boss Sean Dyche admits he will explore the list of free agents after news of a serious injury to midfield lynchpin Dean Marney.
Marney will be out for the rest of the season at least with a cruciate knee ligament injury sustained on Sunday.
And on the back of a failure to land central midfield reinforcements during the January transfer window, it leaves Burnley light in that area for the remainder of the season.
Dyche has David Jones, Scott Arfield and the likes of Steven Reid, as well as Matt Taylor and Stephen Ward, when fit, to call on, but he can bring in free agents outside the window, as he did this time last year with Chris Baird, who helped seal promotion.
Dyche said: “We’ll be looking at that in case, but it’s just what is available?
“Bairdy was one which fell out of sorts and he did terrific for us - there can be good players, it’s not just they’ve fallen out of form, it can be the market, who can fit them in, who can afford them.
“If there’s someone out there who we feel is appropriate, of course we’ll look at that.”
And he bemoaned the timing of the blow, a week after the window closed: “As we said, we had two deals that were agreed, and the clubs decided not to do that, which is their right.
“Then it’s an unbelievable where someone gets a serious injury a week later, that is bizarre.
“We can’t overthink it, it’s about moving forwards. “We’ve been light in there for a long time, last season we couldn’t operate in there with finance to change that, and this season we’ve been trying to spend the money, but if two say no, you can only have so many lined up.
“The biggest misconception about deadline day is this kind of mythical ideal - why didn’t they do that deal four weeks ago? Because that deal wasn’t available four weeks ago.
“As it gets closer, managers start moving their chess pieces and one deal knocks onto another, onto another.
“It’s been a pretty quiet window.” Marney’s absence means an opportunity for someone else, but Dyche admits he will have to look within his senior professionals for the solution: “I don’t think there’s anyone knocking on the door, this is a level where it’s very difficult to blood youngsters.
“We’ve got a couple with Keano and Danny, and Tripps just beyond them, earning their spurs, but across the division there’s a smattering of them.”
Incredibly, Marney is the third Burnley player to suffer a cruciate knee ligament injury inside 12 months after Sam Vokes and Kevin Long, and Dyche said: “It’s amazing when you think we’ve had three cruciate injuries in a year, all of them anomalies really.
“Vokesey twisted funny with hardly anyone near him, big Longy has a landing at Newcastle, and then Deano, there was nothing malicious in the challenge.
“It’s a strange one. He himself was saying to the physio after he thought he might have been able to get through it and run it off, such was his desire to continue.
“Unfortunately, that’s not the case. We feel him him and ourselves because he’s done very well over a number of years, certainly in my time.
“But we move forwards, we have to. We operate as a group, but he’ll get good support and we wish him well on that journey back to full fitness.”