Burnley midfielder Josh Brownhill started on the right wing for the Clarets in their win over Watford yesterday – although journalist Alex James feels that he would be best utilised elsewhere.
While he was involved in the move which led to Jay Rodriguez’s winner against the Hornets, James believes that Brownhill will eventually shift into a central role and is playing out wide because of the make-up of Sean Dyche’s current squad.
He wrote for Lancashire Live: “The £9million man again started on the right of midfield and had a hand in the goal when his neat flick and well-weighted pass set Dwight McNeil away down the left. Brownhill grew into the contest and was one of the better performers in the second half.
“Undoubtedly his best position is in the middle of the park where he impressed for Bristol City and was able to provide goals and guile for the Championship side.
“But with Jack Cork and Ashley Westwood forming a partnership favoured by Dyche the 24-year-old is having to find his home out wide.”
Howard concluded: “It will be interesting to see how his Clarets career develops in the next few weeks and months but his long-term future surely lies in the middle of the park.”
He correctly alludes to the Cork-Westwood central midfield double act that has rarely been broken up all season, whereas the departures of the out-of-contract Jeff Hendrick and Aaron Lennon along with the injury to Johann Berg Gudmundsson have created a vacancy on the right flank which Brownhill has filled.
In which position would you prefer to see Josh Brownhill playing for Burnley?
He has adapted to that role commendably, winning five headers in the defeat at Manchester City on Monday and another four in yesterday’s win over Watford. He also registered two shots and one successful dribble against the Hornets on a satisfying day for him and his team-mates.
However, as Howard has said, he could get his chance in the middle of the park further down the line and he may well thrive in that role, having scored three goals and provided one assists from central midfield for Bristol City earlier this season (as per WhoScored).
It is still early days in Brownhill’s Burnley career and therefore too soon to make a definitively judgement on where his ‘best’ position lies. However, it should please Dyche to know that he has a midfielder who can equally adapt to central or wide roles as the situation requires.
Burnley fans, do you agree with James’ assessment of Brownhill? Comment below with your views!
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