Hendrick has adapted well to 'biggest step'

Jeff Hendrick
Jeff Hendrick

Burnley will be without the suspended Jeff Hendrick against Sunderland at Turf Moor tomorrow.

But Sean Dyche feels the club record signing has adjusted well to "arguably one of the biggest steps in football" from the Championship to Premier League.

Signed on deadline day from Derby County in a deal worth in excess of £10m, Hendrick has two goals in 15 appearances for the Clarets, and has recently started to show exactly why Dyche shattered the transfer record to land the Republic of Ireland international.

He picked up his fifth booking of the season in the 1-0 win over Middlesbrough on Boxing Day, and will return for the trip to Manchester City on Monday.

Dyche said: "I think he’s done very well, he’s enjoying his time with us and what we do as a team and he’s adapted to it and done a good job.

"He’s that type, he’s got a good manner and an open mind, as he should have at his age, he seems like he’s been around for a while because he’s played at a young age at Derby, but he’s still quite young, especially in the Premier League and he’s adapting very well."

Hendrick has played off the front in. 4-4-1-1, and as a more orthodox central midfielder, and Dyche added: "His game is maturing, it has to in the Premier League.

"You’re playing against some very good players and it’s a definite step up from the Championship, arguably one of the biggest steps in football because of the enormous financial gain in the Premier League and teams being in there for a number of years, there has become a gap.

"It’s slightly pulled in with the spending in the Championship, but there’s still a big jump for players going into the Premier League, particularly if you’re not jumping into a side that are regulars in the Premier League and have been there for 10 years, you’re adapting into a team who are going to have it’s fair share of challenges along the way."

Hendrick's midfield colleague Dean Marney will be assessed ahead of tomorrow's game after coming off in the win over Middlesbrough.

Dyche said: "Dean Marney came off the other day but he’s looking better, so we’ll see over the next 24 hours."