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Andy Lochhead: Lafferty can play a big role at Turf

Danny Lafferty

Danny Lafferty

First published in Sport by

DANNY Lafferty says he is “flattered” to have been offered a three-year contract by manager Sean Dyche to stay at Burnley.

But the Irishman has earned his new deal at Turf Moor.

Fair enough, he hasn’t had as many games as he would prefer. But that is no reflection on him as a player and everything to do with the form of Ben Mee keeping him out of the side.

And, to be honest, Mee’s form could have a lot to do with having Lafferty breathing down his neck, because Mee will know that if he is not on top of his game then there is someone who is capable of coming in and taking your place at a moment’s notice. Lafferty has a fair bit of ability. You don’t play for your country without it and he has become a regular in the Northern Ireland squad.

He is unfortunate not to have made the starting XI more times. Unfortunately you have to have players on the bench, but it is a squad game now and he has played his part in Burnley’s success this season.

His career has taken an incredible turn since he arrived from Derry City two and a half years ago. He has become a full international and will become a Premier League player next season.

He must be pinching himself. But, as with the rest of the squad, he is there on merit.

Despite his shortage of match action, it won’t have been a difficult decision for him to stay. And committing to the club in signing that contract is the first building block in the manager establishing his squad for next season.

It would be nice to see a new face or two to add to the squad, but I’m not concerned that any external business hasn’t been done yet.

It is still early days, and with players and agents on holiday, then I’m not anticipating any transfer activity for a few weeks.

I think the World Cup factor will slow things down too.

But there is plenty of time for Sean to assemble the pieces of the jigsaw, and he will be busy behind the scenes setting things in place.

It was hoped that automatic promotion would have given the Clarets a head-start in the market.

It might have been more of a concern had Derby County got promoted - which on the balance of play they should have been.

But QPR got lucky on the day, scoring the winner with their only real chance of the game.

They will be shopping in an entirely different market to us.

Money is no object to Harry Redknapp, and he has already been linked with moves for Rio Ferdinand, Frank Lampard, Ashley Cole, Andros Townsend and Michael Dawson.

Those kind of players are out of our reach, but I back Sean Dyche to get the men he wants.

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