Burnley defender Ben Gibson could be nearing an exit from the club as talks over a loan move commence – with Jimmy Dunne a potential beneficiary of any such deal.
Football Insider reported that the ex-Middlesbrough man is in talks with Norwich, who are keen to sign him on loan after he became frozen out of the first team picture at Turf Moor.
Gibson was Burnley’s joint-record signing when they bought him for £15m from Middlesbrough in 2018 but his time at Turf Moor has been rather underwhelming – he has only played six times for the Clarets, with the last of those appearances almost a year ago in a Carabao Cup defeat to Sunderland (as per TransferMarkt).
Accoring to The Mirror, the 27-year-old became frustrated at his lack of game-time under Dyche and he fell out with some of the club’s management before being given permission to train with former club ‘Boro earlier this year.
With Gibson edging closer to a move away, his departure would leave Burnley with just three senior centre-backs in Ben Mee, James Tarkowski and Kevin Long – injury or suspension to even one of those would leave them very threadbare at the back.
It could, though, present an opportunity for former Manchester United academy prospect Dunne to forge his way into the first team squad. He signed for the Clarets four years ago but, now 22, he has yet to make a senior appearance for them, instead having no fewer than five loan spells away from Turf Moor.
Can Jimmy Dunne break into the first team picture at Burnley in 2020/21?
The Republic of Ireland under-21 international was on the bench for Burnley’s last nine games of the 2019/20 Premier League season but was not called upon by Dyche for any of those matches (as per TransferMarkt).
Gibson’s failure to make even a sole appearance in almost a year lays bare that he has no future at Burnley, so the proposed loan move to Norwich at least offers him a fresh start elsewhere.
It could be beneficial not just for him but also for Dunne, who at 22 may feel that he will want to settle down at Turf Moor and try to break into the first team rather than constantly having to feed off a diet of loan moves to the Football League.
With Dyche not blessed for centre-back cover, the 2020/21 season could present the Irishman with an opportunity to stake his claim for a fixed place in the Clarets’ first team squad.
Burnley fans, will you be glad to get Gibson out of the club, even if only on loan? Comment below with your views!
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