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Burnley Should Simply End Their Interest In Signing Stoke’s £3m Attacker: Doesn’t Make Much Sense

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Jonathan Walters
Jonathan Walters
Jonathan Walters

Why Burnley Should End Their Interest In Stoke City’s Jonathan Walters

Premier League outfit Burnley seem to have set their eyes on signing Jonathan Walters from Stoke City. The Daily Mail reported that the Clarets have made a £3million offer for the 33-year old forward. But, the bid was rejected by the Potters, with a report from Stoke Sentinel claiming that the club found the bid extremely derisory.

The Republic of Ireland international has grown frustrated with the lack of minutes that came his way last season. Walters found himself way down the pecking order of manager Mark Hughes’ plans and hence just started 13 Premier League games in the 2016-17 campaign and made just 24 appearances across all competitions, in which he managed 4 goals and 4 assists. With just one year left on his current deal with Stoke, he is keen on finding himself a new club in the summer, before kicking off the new season.

Burnley survived the drop on their return to the Premier League last season, contrary to popular opinion. But, manager Sean Dyche realises that a lot of work needs to be done if they are to cement their status as a Premier League outfit over the coming years.

One of the major areas where the Clarets need drastic improvement is their attack. Burnley just managed a total of 39 goals in the Premier League last season. Only the three relegated teams, Hull City (37), Middlesbrough (27) and Sunderland (29) found the back of the net on fewer occasions than Dyche’s side and that is something that needs to be addressed ahead of next season.

With fears surrounding the potential exit of last season’s second highest goal-scorer Andre Gray, the 25-year old who notched up 10 strikes and 3 assists in the past term is reportedly a top target for Everton and a transfer is likely to take place in the near future.

Considering all factors, bringing in a new forward in the summer will be a top priority for the Clarets. However, Walters is far from the solution that they should be considering.

The 33-year old may provide Dyche with several options due to his versatility of playing as a centre-forward or on the right flank. The manager has shown an inkling to build a team around a host of British players, having brought in the likes of Robbie Brady, Ashley Westwood and Jeff Hendrick over the past year.

The fact that Walters is on a decline and is in the twilight of his career should not be lost on Dyche. In the last three seasons combined in the Premier League, the Republic of Ireland international has just scored 17 goals from 82 league outings – a scoring rate of just one goal every 5 matches. That is hardly the quality that Burnley should be looking at, at this point of time.

With Stoke rejecting their £3million offer, branding it as “derisory”, indicates that they are expecting a significant amount of increase in the fee. At that price, Walters doesn’t exactly represent value for money. So, it doesn’t really make much sense for the Clarets to pursue their interest in the attacker and should look elsewhere to sort out their goal-scoring woes.