Clarets coach Steve Stone expecting defender Ali Koiki to head back out on loan

Defender Ali Koiki is unlikely to start the season as back up to Charlie Taylor, according to Burnley Under 23s coach Steve Stone.
Ali Koiki (right) wrestles with Notts County's Mitch RoseAli Koiki (right) wrestles with Notts County's Mitch Rose
Ali Koiki (right) wrestles with Notts County's Mitch Rose

Clarets boss Sean Dyche is on the lookout for a left back to compete with the former Leeds United man after a decision was made to allow Republic of Ireland international Stephen Ward to leave the club.

Dyche, who had been linked with a £6m move for Bristol City full back Joe Bryan last summer, was reportedly interested in taking 23-year-old Rapid Vienna left back Boli Bolingoli-Mbombo to Turf Moor.

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However, the speculation surrounding the £3m rated Belgian - a cousin of Manchester United striker Romelu Lukaku - were well wide of the mark.

Koiki, 19, impressed during a loan spell with Swindon Town last term, making 15 appearances in League Two.

And it appears he’ll be taking a similar path during the 2019/20 campaign. Stone said: “He had been playing left wing back or left back for Swindon.

“He has been brilliant, he has had men’s football and really enjoyed it. There have been a couple of games where he has been taken off for tactical reasons.

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“Now he has done that one he needs to go one higher and make the same impact again. He has been to a footballing side in Swindon so now he might need to go to somebody who is a little bit different and see a different side to the game.

“That could be in League One or League Two where it is a bit tougher and the ball is in the air a bit more where he has to compete for second balls and his development will progress because of that. We are delighted with Ali and where he has come from this season.”

The teenager is one of many earmarked for a loan move next season. Stone will sit down and map out the futures of the club’s proteges, while trying to maintain the competitive element within his squad.

“I have already looked at the squad and have already earmarked loads of them to go out on loan,” he said. “Bobby Thomas for example, Jordan Cropper, I am looking at the likes of those going out on loan, but we will sit down and will map out who is going to go out on loan and when.

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“We want to make sure we are still competitive in this league as well. We want to bring the younger ones through and we don’t want a threadbare squad where we put the younger ones in and they just get beat every week. We want to be competitive so they can progress as well.”