UnCoyleing the Transfer Targets
It's all getting hectic in the transfer market with rumours flying left,right and centre about potential new players who could be targets for Owen Coyle.
With the Clarets preparing for their first season in the Premier League and the first in the top flight since 1976, what sort of player will we be looking for and at what price?
What about the rumours already and what truth are there in them?
Over the last few days after returning from holiday, Owen Coyle has been speaking to the media about the transfer speculation both in terms of the general type of player he is looking for and also in some cases scotching the rumours on some of the links.
Coyle on returning from holiday told the media:
'There will be a host of players out there who are out of our reach. I had to laugh when I was away on holiday we were linked with a couple of players who I had never even spoke to'
One of these players appears to be Middlesbrough defender Rhys Williams, a player we have continually been linked with after his loan spell at Turf Moor last season.
The media suggested we had already approached the newly relegated club to enquire about a potential permanent move to Turf Moor. Middlesbrough were also reported to have told Burnley that they would have to break their £1.3million transfer record if they wanted to sign the 20-year old. A figure in the order of £1.5 million has been banded about.
Rhys Williams himself would be keen to come back especially now that promoted Burnley have moved in the opposite direction to relegated Middlesbrough:
'We'll have to wait and see what happens, but I'd love to come back. It's not all down to me at the end of the day, it's down to the two gaffers, but I wouldn't say no.'
However speaking to the Lancashire Telegraph, Coyle confirmed the current situation denying any approach:
'I`ve not spoken to Middlesbrough about him. He`s a player I like, there`s no doubt about that, but I`m not going to get involved with the speculation about you`re after this, that and the next thing.'
Speaking to the Official Site about rumours in general Owen Coyle said:
'Some rumours will be a load of nonsense and what I can assure the fans is when I have news regarding players they will here it from me first. Unless any speculation is confirmed by me, then they can take it as being a load of nonsense.'
One bit of nonsense according to Owen Coyle recently was a rumour that he was interested in bringing Newcastle and former Rovers winger, Damien Duff to Turf Moor. The 30-year old, Republic of Ireland International though never appears to have been in Coyle's sights:
'I read a report linking us with Damien Duff, but he would be nowhere within our reach!
It does however appear that Coyle has enquired about two players but has been rebuffed:
'I have already put a couple of offers in for players at different places and they were initially rejected, so you either have to move on, or revisit it, that's where we are'
One of these players almost certainly appears to be Swansea star striker, 30 year old Jason Scotland. An initial bid thought to be in the region of £1 million looks to have been rejected by Swans chairman, Huw Jenkins who recenly told the Official Swansea site:
'Burnley have made an approach for Jason Scotland but our valuation for a player who has finished as our top scorer over the last two seasons is miles apart, we value Jason very highly - after all he has scored 53 goals in the last two seasons for us.'
It is difficult to know who the other player might be. It could be Russell Anderson, the player we had on loan from Sunderland last season. He picked up a cruel cruciate ligament injury that kept him sidelined all season but despite that fact it is known Owen Coyle is keen to sign the defender.
Another possibility could be Everton defender,Lars Jacobsen
Burnley are reportedly ready to offer 29 year old Danish International,Jacobsen a contract at Turf Moor if the Dane doesn't extend his stay at Everton.
His agent,Karsten Aabrink though has denied any approach by the club although he would not rule out interest if there is some contact made. Arbrink told the Lancashire Telegraph:
"There has been nothing but maybe it will happen.I don`t know if they are interested, I only heard about it when I read it in the press.Of course I`m always happy when my players have interest"
There are so many other players we are rumoured to have targeted and Coyle has neither denied or confirmed an interest.
You can take your pick from this lot:
Gary Caldwell (Celtic)
Tyrone Mears (Derby)
Kyel Reid (West Ham)
Sean St Ledger (Preston)
Jermaine Beckford (Leeds)
Luis Boa Morte (West Ham)
Scott Arfield (Falkirk)
Lee Martin (Manchester United)
Derek Riordan (Hibernian)
Andrew Driver (Hearts)
So in general what type of player is Owen Coyle after bearing in mind the limitations of our budget despite now being a Premier League club?
Well one thing we wont be seeing are any prima donnas on high salaries (over £15k/week)at the club nor players who are content to be paid megabucks whilst being happy as an inactive squad player!
Coyle told the Official Site:
'I will make sure when spending money that the players we sign are ones for the future and who we can improve as we have done with the ones we signed last year.If somebody's motivation to come to Burnley Football Club is money then they are the wrong type of players for me.I am respectful that people are looking for decent salaries, but I want players that are motivated to be the best they can on the football pitch. The opportunity to play for Burnley Football Club is a huge carrot for anybody and that will be my focus for speaking to players. We have to know they are coming here for footballing reasons and not to chase money. In terms of Premier League salaries, we will be the lowest payers, but equally, they will still be good salaries in life, so players have to be aware of that."
Coyke was quick to also emphasize that he wanted to play football in his earlier career and wasn't motivated by financial greed:
"Finance was never a motivation for me. As a player, I dropped salaries five times because I wanted to play'
That should therefore defuse any 'kettle calling pot' arguments!
The gaffer also looks keen to use his contacts in the Premier League and already appears to have approached Sir Alex, probably about potential loan players:
'I spoke to Sir Alex while I was on holiday - but I can`t say what about'
He might also be speaking to Arsene Wenger if the reported rumours about our loan interest in Young Gunners, Mark Randall and Kieran Gibbs are true.
On a final note, Coyle did not rule out breaking the club record transfer fee currently held for Martin Paterson at £1.3 million:
"Who can say if the record will go or not.I want to get the best players I can for Burnley but I want that to be within the budget set by the chairman and the board. We are looking to strengthen in every area but I am still very clear about what is required."
This all sounds a very sensible approach by Owen Coyle and the Board but in the end it must be a very fine balance between getting the right players in that we need to keep us up in the top flight but in sufficient quantity and at the right price.
Good luck Owen, I for one will back his judgement no matter what happens in the next few months in the transfer window after what he has achieved for this club in under two years.