A Tale of Two Clarets Keepers
32-year-old keeper, Brian Jensen affectiontely known as the Beast has now verbally agreed a new two year contract which will run until the end of the 2009/10 season.
The gaffer,Owen Coyle had this to say about the deal:
'I am delighted that Brian has verbally agreed a new two year deal
'He understands that there will be fierce competition, but we welcome his decision and look forward to him signing in due course.'
Brian Jensen is currently Burnley FC's longest serving player
He was transferred from West Bromwich Albion and signed by Stan Ternent during the summer of 2003.
He has seen off the challenge of a number of goalkeepers for the number one choice.
The Beast may have lost the Number One jersey to Danny Coyne and then Gabor Kiraly but he is still the one in favour. Injuries to Danny Coyne and Kiraly spilling goals though have helped his cause.
Kiraly looked to have secured the choice for keeper at the start of the season and after Owen Coyle replaced Steve Cotterill as gaffer in November last year, he was preferred between the sticks for the first 12 games of Coyle's reign.
This season Jensen has made 19 league starts compared to 27 for Kiraly.
Both keepers though this season have had some mares, spilling goals that have led to loss of points. Arguably considering we were only 8 points of the play-offs, those gaffes could well have cost us a chance of reaching them.
A number of Clarets fans were convinced Jensen would be playing his last season for the Clarets with the Dane's current deal due to expire this summer. He seems to be the great survivor though and it is now Gabor Kiraly who is unlikely to remain a Claret for much longer.
Kiraly was signed by Steve Cotterill last summer and joined the Clarets on 30 May 2007 after being released by Crystal Palace.
He signed a two year deal for the club with an option for a third.
He was the preferred keeper under Cotterill starting in 18 out of the 22 matches this season whilst Steve was still manager (including the one game under Steve Davis against Leicester away played a few days after Cotterill's resignation)
Following the Cup defeat by Arsenal in January he was dropped by Owen Coyle and has only managed to start three games since that time.
Owen Coyle has since made it plain that he will now hear offers for the Hungarian international keeper.
The gaffer saud recently:
'Although Gabor is under contract, I am going to be bringing in a goalkeeper and if someone comes in for him I will not be difficult to deal with.'
Gabor however seems to keen to stay and recently is reported to have said the following:
'My dream is to finish my career in Hungary at Haladas but still I feel the desire to play as good football as I can. What's more, last year I extended my contract to 2009 with Burnley with one more year option. I would not mind to stay until 2010 as I feel good here.'
It is quite possible therefore that by the start of the new season, we might have three goalkeepers on the books. That is assuming of course we can find the right goalkeeper to bring to the club. It will be interesting to see if the new keeper will be young and up and coming possibly as understudy to Jensen or whether an experienced keeper will arrive to take the Number One jersey and be the recognised first-team choice.