No offer for Keane – and no need to sell star

Michael Keane
Michael Keane
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  • Clarets boss Dyche reiterates that the club has no desire, or need, to sell
  • Backup keeper Matt Gilks suffers injury in training
  • Sean Dyche relaxed over Joey Barton contract situation

Contrary to speculation, Burnley have not received a £7m offer for centre back Michael Keane.

And the Clarets wouldn’t welcome any bids for the 23-year-old former England Under 21 international.

On Wednesday, Metro Sport suggested Premier League Stoke City had made an offer of £5m plus incentives for Keane, who has been an ever-present in the league for the Clarets this season.

It was reported that the bid had been rejected, but I understand Burnley are unaware of any official offer, and boss Sean Dyche has reiterated that the club have no desire, or need, to sell.

Dyche said: “There are stories about loads of different things, that many it’s hard to answer all of them, but we are not in a position where we want or need to sell players.

“We are secure in what we are doing, and our players know that.”

Dyche is looking to add to his squad ahead of the transfer deadline at 11 p.m. on Monday, February 1st, and he admits any deals may go down to the wire due to the nature of the window.

Burnley have had bids for Brentford pair James Tarkowski and Alan Judge knocked back, but the club are looking at a number of situations, and Dyche admitted one which came out of the blue last week is “still bubbling along, although we’re not there yet. We’ll see how that changes over the next few days.”

In terms of Burnley’s progress in the window in general, he added: “This window in particular is a free for all, and we try and do things properly and quickly.

“People often say ‘why don’t they just sign this or that player?’, but it takes all parties to say yes.

“A couple of things have opened up, but there are only so many players out there with the quality and experience we need, who can affect us now.

“Certain situations become impossible because of finance, or alll parties can’t agree – the depth of players available isn’t there, and we are still shopping in a different market to other clubs.”

Burnley may well look to bring in experienced goalkeeping cover, with Matt Gilks out with an eblow problem sustained in training ahead of last Friday’s 3-1 win at Brentford.

Daniel Nizic was named on the bench after returning from a loan spell with Crewe, but Dyche said: “Gilksy made a brave save and got a twist on his elbow. He’s not going to be out months and months, but won’t be back immediately.

“We’re happy it’s not more serious, and he’s a strong lad.

“We’re looking at options as to who we could bring in, and what we have inside the camp, because we have two young keepers we like as well.”

Burnley have no game until Monday night, when they welcome Derby County to Turf Moor, and, after three away wins in six days last week, Dyche is hoping his side can kick on over the second half of the season.

He said: “There are a lot of good signs going into this phase of the season – an area of the season where we have been strong since I’ve been at the club, particularly through the promotion season, and even last season in the Premier League we were delivering strong performances.

“The first year I was here, we were remoulding the group, then we got our own group together, and we have been strong down the line.

“We remodelled for the Premier League, and again in the summer, and it takes time every time you change the group.

“We have Andre (Gray), Joey (Barton), one of Tendayi (Darikwa) and Matt Lowton playing, Michael Keane playing regularly and Ben Mee in a different position, and it takes time to operate how you want to – new relationships are formed on the pitch.

“But we’ve been playing some good football, getting good results and, after a bump in the road, we’re doing well.

“We’re pleased with things so far, but the challenge is to do it over a season, and there is still plenty of football to go.

“We are delivering results and moments in a season, but it is about consistency and we have to continue in this vein.”

Joey Barton has been a key figure, scoring in the last two games, and, with his contract up at the end of the season, Dyche is relaxed about the situation: “We’ll wait and see how that develops. He’s bought into what we do and is enjoying his football, and both parties have stuck to their side of the bargain.”

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