Clarets boss Sean Dyche feels Jay Rodriguez’s first senior England call-up is a real feather in the cap for the club’s youth set-up.
Rodriguez was named in Roy Hodgson’s squad for the friendly games at Wembley with Chile and Germany this week, after impressing in Southampton’s superb start to the season, following an encouraging debut campaign in the Premier League following a club record £7m switch from Burnley.
Rodriguez was born in Burnley, and attended Barden High School, while starting on the road to glory with Barrowford Celtic - who also produced another England international in Nelson-born former Claret Mike Phelan.
He came through the ranks at Turf Moor, playing in the centre of excellence and youth team under Terry Pashley, before earning a professional contract under Steve Cotterill in the summer of 2007.
And Dyche believes it shows what can be achieved by players coming through the system at Gawthorpe: “We believe in it, it’s a good life source of players, and there are some good things going on here at youth level.
“There’s no guarantee to that, you still need the raw ingredients going into the system to come out the other end in the right fashion.
“We are looking to get good young players, local players of course would be great, into our system and encourage their development, push them through the system, eventually to the first team.
“That’s something we’re attempting to put in place as a club, with me, beyond me, because it’s important that’s laid down.”
Rodriguez was a goalscorer against Dyche’s Watford in March 2012, and he mused: “I managed a team against him and he was showing good signs a few years ago before he got a big move and was adding to his performance levels. It’s good signs of what we can do as a club. He’s one of the big markers. At Watford it was Ashley Young, here it’s Jay Rodriguez, a big marker of the academy and the pathway to the first team.
“Even though he’s not a Burnley player any more I’m sure he’s fondly thought of by all.
“I’m sure everyone’s pleased that he’s got he’s got himself in the England squad.”