BURNLEY have Joey Barton to thank for convincing Jon Flanagan to join the club on loan for a year.

The full-back agreed a switch to Turf Moor in the summer as he continues to battle back from a knee injury that kept him sidelined at Liverpool for 18 months.


And although Barton was leaving the club after a year he only had good things to say about Burnley when Flanagan picked his brains about the Clarets while on holiday.

“I know Joey well. He was here last season and spoke very highly about this club,” said the 23-year-old.

“I was on holiday with him so I was able to ask him about Burnley. We spoke again later and it was all good. He said I couldn’t go wrong here.”

Flanagan has had to wait for his chance in the first team, but he has impressed at left-back recently following the injury to Stephen Ward.

Having come close to winning the Premier League with Liverpool in 2013/14, he knows this season is going to present a different challenge, but it is one he is more than ready for.

“I know Burnley aren’t going to be challenging for the league title, but I’ve come here to play games, get my fitness levels back up and hopefully help keep Burnley in the Premier League,” he said.

“I think my mind was already made up really, but getting that advice pushed me even more towards joining them, and I’m enjoying it.

“I just want to play regular football and get back into the routine I was in two years ago. I never doubted for one second I’d be back, I’m mentally tough.

“We’ll see where it goes from there, and hopefully get back to Liverpool and a starting place. My ideal season? Burnley to qualify for the Europa League and Liverpool to win the League…”

Barton’s decision to leave Burnley didn’t work out, but he could be set for a return to the club after seeing his Rangers contract terminated, and Flanagan might be doing the persuading when the pair meet up in the next week or two.

“We are meeting up for a coffee in the next week or so,” he said. “We haven’t gone into detail about what has happened, but he will be OK.”