Dyche reveals Burnley working on loan move for Drinkwater
The midfielder has not played a first-team game since last season’s Community Shield.
Sean Dyche has revealed Burnley are working to bring Danny Drinkwater to the club on loan from Chelsea.
The midfielder was understood to be at the Clarets’ training ground on Thursday but Dyche insisted it was not yet a done deal just three hours before the deadline.
Asked about his likely transfer deadline day dealings, Dyche said: “There’s a maybe on Nakhi Wells going out and a maybe on Danny Drinkwater coming in.
“That’s not confirmed. There’s more than just the i’s to dot and t’s to cross. It’s got a reasonable chance but everyone needs to agree to get it done.”
After beginning his career with Manchester United, Drinkwater starred in Leicester’s stunning Premier League title-winning campaign, earning him a £35million move to Chelsea two years ago.
But he has made just five Premier League starts for the Blues and his only appearance last season came in the Community Shield a year ago.
If he can show anything like the form he produced for the Foxes, then Drinkwater would be a coup for Burnley, who lacked creativity in midfield last season in the absence of Steven Defour.
Defour missed most of last season through injury and is still some way away from a return following calf surgery.
Dyche said of Drinkwater: “I think it would be a challenge for him. I don’t think for one second he’d come here thinking that he walks in the team – or he’d be naive if he did. We like the players that have done well for us over time.
“We all know there’s no guarantees with any signing you make, you can only hedge your bets in the right way and I can only imagine after a quiet couple of years he’s hungry and he’s got a desire to prove himself, first of all to himself.
“He’s a good player, we all know that. But to prove to himself what he’s about and obviously that knocks on to the team, and that’s the idea.
“But first things first, we’ve got to get it done, and then second thing he’s got to be fit enough and ready enough and full of that desire to go and oust the people who are here.”
Wells joined Burnley two years ago from Huddersfield for £5million but is yet to start a game and looks set to return to QPR, where he spent last season, on loan.
Burnley sold goalkeeper Tom Heaton to Aston Villa but rebuffed interest from Leicester in England defender James Tarkowski.
“It’s a different club now than even as short as two or three years ago,” said Dyche.
“We’re not splashing it, as you know, massive net spend of about £5million in this window. But we are in a very healthy position on the other side. When people come knocking, we’re certainly not a club that needs to open the doors easily now, unless it’s right and it’s proper to do so.”
With Heaton out of the picture, Nick Pope looks set to reclaim the number one jersey, although Dyche insisted Joe Hart – and new signing Bailey Peacock-Farrell – are in the picture.
“I don’t put people in a pecking order,” he said.
“I think we’ve got three good keepers. Joe’s delivered a very strong pre-season so he’s obviously showing signs that he’s ready. Popey equally and then Bailey has come in to support that.”
New signings Erik Pieters and Jay Rodriguez, back at the club where he began his career, could make their debuts against Southampton on Saturday.