Window Shopping and Last Day Sales?
The last day of the transfer window is at long last upon us. Burnley now have until 11 pm today (Wednesday 31st August) to make any last minute purchases, hold onto the ones they want to keep and/or say goodbye to the deadwood and unwanted fringe players, if we have any left!
What though are our chances of bringing someone new in before the window shuts and indeed our chances of holding onto our key players, especially Jay Rodriguez? Who will be our likely targets and who else could be earmarked to depart Turf Moor either on loan or on a permanent deal?
It could be a busy day for Operational Director, Brendan Flood negotiating last minute deals either into or out of the club and there is no doubting we do need to strengthen the squad. Eddie Howe himself has said as much.
"We`ve lost some big players," said the Clarets gaffer
"Martin Paterson`s been a huge loss to us as everyone knows.
'Michael Duff came in and did really well for a game and unfortunately we lose him now for four to six weeks.
"We`re so thin on the ground body wise. Our squad (on Saturday) is what it is.
'Those are the 16 players who are fit, so we do need some new additions, we do need to add a little more depth."
In answer to the question about bringing in some new faces before the window closes he said:
"Hopefully because we do need to add a couple."
Many Clarets fans may well think that is an understatement. We have let four players go in the summer, Graham Alexander, Steven Thompson, Kevin MacDonald and Chris Iwelumo and been forced to let another three leave Turf Moor because their ambitions were not with Burnley. Chris Eagles, Tyrone Mears and Danny Fox have all departed. Clarke Carlisle also of course has effectively left the club after securing a season-long loan down the road at Preston and so too has Leon Cort who this week secured a season-long loan at Charlton.
A number of other players currently listed in the squad have also been sent out on loan for various amounts of time mainly from our development squad including Kevin Long, Wes Fletcher, Joe McKee and Alex-Ray Harvey. Richard Eckersley is also out on loan in Canada.
Coming into the club, we have added just six new faces so far and one those is a third string goalkeeper with two others being loans. Ben Mee and Kieran Trippier both arrived on season-long loans from Manchester City and we signed keeper Jon Stewart on a one year deal. Our biggest permanent signings have been Keith Treacy from Preston, Zavon Hines from West Ham and Danny Ings from Bournemouth
We seem to have gone from being a squad that only needed 2-3 players to strengthen to one that is now in transition and still needing 2-3 players! The situation of course has not been helped either with the injuries to Martin Paterson, Danny Ings and Michael Duff
Burnley FC Media Manager, Daz Bentley also hinted on Clarets Player on Saturday during the Derby match commentary that we could also see a couple of fringe players depart before the window closes although he did not indicate if this was out on loan or permanently. One of those, Leon Cort has since gone out on loan but it remains to be seen if anybody else follows suit. We do still have some youngsters in the Development Squad who could benefit from a loan to get some games under their belt and at the moment Dominic Knowles and Steve Hewitt look possible candidates.
There was a bit of a shock during the week, when it was rumoured in the Sun that Wade Elliott could be moving to Nottingham Forest on a permanent deal with speculation that he was not happy at the club. I asked Daz on Twitter if Wade was now classed as one his fringe players but thankfully he suggested otherwise and apparently he has since said the Sun rumour has no legs.
The big question on everybody`s lips is whether we can hold onto Jay Rodriguez today. Southampton have been sniffing around for some time with some reports that we have already turned down a £4.5 million offer and other deals involving a player/cash option. Jason Puncheon was one Saints player to be mentioned. The club keep saying that Jay Rod is 'Not for sale` and Daz again emphasized that on Clarets Player over the weekend although of course did add the usual rider that they would have to consider silly money if offered suggesting that figure could be in the region of £8 million. Conor Wickham`s sale to Sunderland was mentioned in this regard as an example. The sad thing is in today`s world of players` agents, short-term contracts and greed, we look likely to lose him sooner rather than later anyway considering he will only have one year left to run of his two contract next summer. It will be the same old, we have to sell him now or risk losing him on a Bosman one year later. I hope though at least we can hold onto him until the summer of 2012.
So who then are our targets? Well I hope they are to supplement the squad now rather than replace others about to leave but the two names we have been linked with the most appear to be Stoke defender and long-throw expert, Ryan Shotton and West Ham winger cum striker, Junior Stanislas. Clarets fans may have expected these to be done deals by now but let`s hope it`s just a matter of sorting out the final detail today. Both deals though do seem to have stalled and all of a sudden both fringe players now seem to be featuring for their current clubs which is a bit of a worry!
Barnsley striker, Danny Haynes was mentioned as an alternative to Stanislas recently and also there was mention of a possible loan deal for West Brom and former Rochdale defender, Craig Dawson should the Shotton deal fall through. If you are a Twitter follower then you might also like to believe we are in the market for 23 year old Bristol City midfielder Albert Adomah and Liverpool 22 year old midfielder, Jay Spearing (on loan) but who knows?
Whatever happens today, if anything, Vital Burnley will try and bring you the news as soon as possible in articles or in the forums. Let`s hope it`s a day to remember for all the right reasons!