SEAN Dyche admitted this is the toughest transfer window in his time as Burnley boss.

The Clarets have yet to make an outfield signing, despite losing three senior players before the end of last season, in addition to a crippling injury list.

Robbie Brady is the latest to be added to it, after suffering a fractured rib in Sunday's defeat at Leicester City, where Jimmy Dunne made his debut in central defence alongside Kevin Long, in the absence of James Tarkowski (toe) and captain Ben Mee (thigh).

And although Tarkowski has a chance of returning for the Carabao Cup third round tie at Millwall tomorrow night (kick-off 7pm), with Jack Cork (ankle) and Ashley Barnes (groin) not yet ready for a first team return, and Johann Berg Gudmundsson's recent knee injury, Dyche's squad is increasingly stretched.

Burnley have been linked with Brighton midfielder Dale Stephens, but have so far only signed goalkeeper Will Norris from Wolves, with the clock ticking towards the October 5 deadline.

And while a situation of not having a specific transfer budget to work with is nothing new to Dyche, it seems to be proving a particular hindrance in the current climate.

"This is the hardest one, yes," said the Burnley boss, of this summer's transfer window.

"There have been tough times at other times. I think the very first one I had when we lost Charlie Austin two days before the season started and we'd only brought in three free transfers, not doing them down because they happened to become legends in a way here in Scotty Arfield, Tom Heaton and David Jones. They ended up being top top players, and top servants, don't get me wrong.

"But we still lost a top centre forward at that time.

"So from then looking to now, this is probably the biggest moment, where last season there were contract situations that went against us for whatever reason - we've been through all that - and now we haven't replaced them.

"You add in the injuries and all of a sudden it's certainly the most stretched we've been since I've been here."