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Burnley manager Sean Dyche must be feeling pleased with the way his team has started the new Premier League season. They are at 7th place in the table, having amassed 22 points in 12 games so far.
Dyche should also be happy with his dealings in the summer transfer window, which saw the club sign Chris Wood from Leeds United for a club record fee. The addition of Swansea City midfielder Jack Cork, Leeds defender Charlie Taylor and Stoke City’s veteran forward Jonathan Walters has given balance to the squad.
Despite a positive start, Dyche knows the twists and turns in the Premier League and a couple of signings in January will give his club the best chance of retaining their status as a top-flight outfit.
According to reports, Burnley are keeping tabs on Northern Ireland winger Jordan Jones ahead of the January transfer window. The 23-year-old has established himself in the Rugby Park first-team, which has alerted the Clarets.
Jones has been starring for Kilmarnock in the Scottish Premier League this season after being released by Middlesbrough last year. He made only one first-team appearance for Middlesbrough and spent spells on loan at Hartlepool United and Cambridge United, before being released.
Although Jones was left disappointed when the Teeside club released him, he feels that the last 18 months has helped him develop into an even matured player. And now at Kilmarnock, the midfielder has established himself as a fan favourite since joining the club last year.
Jones has made 19 appearances this season, scoring 2 goals and his rich vein of form saw him receive a call-up from Michael O’Neill who also handed him the iconic No. 7 shirt for their World Cup play-off against Switzerland this month. He made his first international appearance, as a substitute, as Northern Ireland drew 0-0 with Switzerland and fell agonisingly short of reaching the World Cup finals.
Under the tutelage of new manager Steve Clarke, the Irishman has improved massively as he has been moved from the wing to a less defined attacking position. Jones has thrived in the free role, using his pace, skill and technique to good effect. Not only has the player given nightmares to defenders but has also been very effective in constantly setting up chances for teammates.
Jones’ pace and trickery on the pitch could tempt Dyche in luring him away to Turf Moor. Apart from Johann Berg Gudmundsson and Robbie Brady, Burnley lack players who can offer width and pace from wide areas. This makes Jones an exciting signing for the Clarets as Dyche can utilise his raw acceleration to exploit back-lines, with sharp and incisive runs in-behind.
So for Dyche to challenge for a higher league finish in the Premier League this season, he should surely be looking at Jones as his primary target in January. There is no doubt that the Kilmarnock man would be a positive addition to the Burnley engine room with his tenacious and indefatigable style.