Sunday, July 22, 2018

Can Burnley avoid relegation next season?

David Nugent in Editorial, English Premier League 20 Jun 2017


Burnley boss Sean Dyche is reported wanted by Crystal Palace

Burnley are what I think of as a proper community football club. The Clarets have owners that really seem to care about the club’s long-term financial future and have budgeted wisely in the past few years.

They also have a highly rated boss in Sean Dyche, whose no-nonsense approach to the game has proven highly successful in Lancashire.

However, there is now worrying reports about Dyche being headhunted by Crystal Palace.

It would by no means prove to be the end of the world for the Clarets. It could make it far difficult for the team to stay in the top-flight next season, though.

Dyche interested in Palace job

Recent newspaper reports suggest that Dyche could be interested in a switch to Selhurst Park this summer. With all due respect to Burnley, Palace are in better shape ahead of the new campaign. The last few transfer windows they have been brave and have signed some very talented players.

Burnley have broken their transfer record twice in the last two windows by signing Jeff Hendrick and Robbie Brady. However, Palace paid more than the Irish duo combined for striker Christian Benteke, so it seems the Eagles have more financial power on paper anyway.

You can see why Dyche would be interested in the Palace job. Maybe the 45-year-old feels he has achieved all he can the club and needs a fresh challenge.

Everton Keane on Michael

If recent reports have suggested that Everton have Burnley centre-back Michael Keane at the top of their summer wishlist for a new centre-back. The Clarets reportedly rate Keane at £25million, but that is unlikely to deter the Merseysiders.

Ronald Koeman has already spent over £50million on two players and is set to add Spanish striker Sandro Ramirez to his squad as well. Everton are not messing around this summer.

Keane has just 12 months left on his contract at Turf Moor, so the Clarets stand to lose a lot of money if do not sell the defender this summer. However, the Lancashire club are prepared to lose him on a free next summer if they do not get a satisfactory fee for the centre-back.

The 24-year-old had been hoping to secure a move back to boyhood club Manchester United. The Red Devils signing Swedish star Victor Lindelof extinguished the prospect of a return to Old Trafford for Keane.

With Everton now leading the race and Liverpool also reported admirers, it seems Keane may well move on this summer. Losing the highly rated centre-back would be a major blow to the Clarets survival chances next season.

One of the favourites for relegation next season

Despite surviving the drop last season, Burnley are the second favourites to be relegated next season at odds of 11/8. For me, those odds are very harsh. The Clarets were more than deserving of staying in the top-flight last season.

They turned Turf Moor into a fortress, beating the likes of Everton and Liverpool at the atmospheric old ground. As a neutral, I was glad that Burnley stayed in the English top-flight. They are an example of how good management and planning can bring stability to a relatively small club by Premier League standards.

I am not sure what will happen with Dyche and Keane. If the pair leaves, the Clarets will be losing two very influential figures in the dressing room and on the pitch. Another thing that would concern me would be their away form. The Clarets won just once away from home all last season.

Overall, next season could be a difficult one for the Clarets. However, like most Premier League clubs, this summer’s transfers will define what happens next season.

Can Burnley avoid relegation next season?


David Nugent

David is a freelance football writer with nearly a decade of experience writing about the beautiful game. The experienced writer has written for over a dozen websites and also an international soccer magazine offline.
Arguably his best work has come as an editorial writer for Soccernews, sharing his good, bad and ugly opinions on the world’s favourite sport. During David’s writing career he has written editorials, betting previews, match previews, banter, news and opinion pieces.



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