Carlisle Beckons on Saturday!
The Clarets are once again on their travels in their third pre-season friendly. They face League One club, Carlisle United at Brunton Park on Saturday, July 20 (3pm KO). Once again it is difficult to be sure what the line-up will be with so many options but Dyche might now be considering tightening up his selection rather than playing so many of his first team squad and development players over a ninety minute period.
The good news for Clarets fans is that at long last we have brought some new out-players to the club to add to our supplement of four new keepers signed in the summer. Burnley have been impressed with midfielder trialist Scott Arfield who has featured in both our pre-season friendlies to date even getting on the score sheet in our 3-0 victory at Cork on Monday night. He has signed a two-year contract and looks set to feature again against Carlisle on Saturday. One new face on show could be former Sunderland striker, Ryan Noble who has also signed for the club this week after agreeing a one-year contract. Could a third new signing also be about to be added? It is widely thought another pre-season trialist, former Wolves and Wigan Athletic midfielder David Jones could soon be a Claret too. He travelled to Ireland and came on from the bench in the second half with fifteen minutes to play and his attitude and style appears to have impressed gaffer, Sean Dyche.
One first-team player yet to make an appearance for the Clarets in pre-season is Marvin Bartley. He has been out injured and did not travel to Ireland for the Cork match. It remains to be seen if he has recovered enough by Saturday to be in contention. Defender Ben Mee came off on 20 minutes in the Cork clash after a challenge left him with a slight knee injury. He was substituted as a precaution though and could be back in the line-up on Saturday. Junior Stanislas (thigh) and Dean Marney (knee) also missed out on the Cork game due to minor niggles. There are two members of the first-team squad though who definitely won`t feature. Winger, George Porter this week signed a season-long loan with League Two, AFC Wimbledon and he is now with them as they prepare for the new season ahead. Another winger absent will be Dane Richards, he is still out on loan playing for Norwegian side, FK Bodø/Glimt and their season does not end until November. However if rumours are true it looks likely he could be about to sign a permanent deal with them should Burnley terminate his contract.
David Edgar has been another pre-season absentee after being on International duty for Canada in the CONCACAF Gold Cup. They however failed to qualify for the quarter finals so Edgar could now be in contention after flying back over the pond.
Talking about pre-season friendlies following the Cork match, Sean Dyche explained what he was mainly hoping to achieve:
"First things first, it (the trip) is to improve fitness and sharpness of course.
"The main thing is to get the group through pre-season injury free - that`s the plan.
"It`s not that easy because we still want them to play hard in the game to get themselves ready for when it really starts and there are points to play for."
Dyche went on to say:
"The results are nice, but it is mainly about people coming through unscathed and fit and getting back their real match sharpness.
"We wanted that winning mentality and it was great to send them home on that performance.
"There were a number of good performances.
"As a manager I am looking at the basics - the shape of the team and how they work for each other, and I thought that was very evident on Monday night, no matter what changes we made."