JAMES Tarkowski has become better at ‘smelling the danger’ thanks to his Premier League experience this season.

That is the view of Clarets boss Sean Dyche after the centre back committed his future to Turf Moor, signing a new four-and-a-half-year deal.

Tarkowski has been one of Burnley’s star men this season, missing just three Premier League games, and filling the void left by Michael Keane’s departure.

Dyche said the 25-year-old’s form this term had warranted a new contract and the Turf boss feels he is learning from his first prolonged taste of top flight action.

“I think a lot of it is game knowledge and experience, the details of playing against some of the top players in Europe, possibly the world, as much as any coaching formats,” Dyche said of Tarkowski’s development.

“You get to an age and a performance level where the games becomes an increased teacher. The higher up you go the more it’s about your knowledge of actually being out there and doing it.

“We can support that with analysis, information and advice, but a lot of it from subliminal learning where you’re doing it all the time.

“Your brain sharpens, you see pictures quicker. I call it smelling danger, a good centre half can smell the danger early and the best centre halves have games where you don’t notice them much.

“Tarky is on his way with that, Ben Mee does it very well I think, he doesn’t always get the same plaudits as Tarky and Keano have had because he’s so efficient so early in the process.”

Tarkowski’s performances this season mean he has been linked with an England call-up for March friendlies against Holland and Italy.

Three Lions boss Gareth Southgate has been a regular at Turf Moor recently, and Dyche added: “Gareth has been at Burnley a lot more often over the last year-and-a-half or so, which is a good sign. Gareth will make his own mind up.

“If he (Tarkowski) is in the thoughts then great, I think it’s good a number of our players are at least in the thoughts, they won’t all make his squads, some might make some and some might not make any.

“It’s good to think that Burnley Football Club have players who are really clear in Gareth’s thoughts and I think that’s a really good sign for the whole group.”

Dyche said the decision to hand Tarkowski, who still had 18 months to run on his previous contract, a new deal was one of ‘fairness’.

“We try to work on a level of fairness and making sure players are on appropriate contracts at the right time. Tarky fits into that,” the Burnley boss said.

“His contract was slightly behind the curve at the club because he had come out of Brentford so we felt it was appropriate on two levels.

“One, he’s worked well in the Premier League and continues to show that. And two, because it was out of sync and when players are out of sync we feel it is appropriate to have them all in similar band.”

Tarkowski himself said he was now keen to repay the faith shown in him by Dyche.

“It’s been a good season so far and it’s nice to be rewarded by the gaffer and the club in this way,” he said.

“Hopefully I can carry on paying them back and put in some good performances.

“Since Keano left, the club has put the trust in me, so far, to take that position on.

“I feel like I’ve done quite well so far and hopefully long may that continue.

“I have said it for a long time this is a long-term project for me and the club so hopefully we can all continue what’s been a positive season so far.”