Burnley appoint new Head of Recruitment
The 35-year-old, who was a young goalkeeper at Oldham Athletic before his playing career was curtailed by a wrist injury, will oversee recruitment, transfer business, contract negotiations and performance analysis in support of manager Sean Dyche and Chief Executive Lee Hoos.
His appointment was sanctioned by the Clarets’ Board prior to the appointment of Dyche, but has been backed by the new manager who will continue to dictate which players he wants to add to his squad.
“I have had some good discussions with him and it’s a similar model to what I had at my previous club,” said the Burnley boss.
“Some of his thoughts are similar to that, so it’s nothing I am not unfamiliar with and he knows it (player selection) is my final decision and that of the staff.
“He’s aware of that and I think it will work really well. It’s the way, in my experience, a lot of clubs are looking now because as a manager you are very timebound.
“Time at the training ground has changed radically in my time. The days of in and out of the training ground quickly are not like that any more.
“We do DVD analysis, pre-hab programmes, weights programmes and all different things.
“The manager’s time has got harder to spread around so I think it’s a really good thing for the club moving forward.”
Dyche added: “We want as much information on targets as we can, never more so than we have to move out of the Premier League money and make sure we are acquiring targets that are suitable for the club and can help the team move forward.
“It’s still not an exact science, the ins and outs of targeting and buying players, but the more you can put into the process, the better chance you have got of a better outcome.”
Darnbrough, whose CV also includes spells working in player analysis for Bolton and Aston Villa, joined West Brom in 2003, operating under Sporting Technical Director Dan Ashworth, who is due to join the FA next summer as director elite development.
And Hoos believes Ashton-born Darnbrough will play an important role in helping the Clarets compete in the transfer market.
The Clarets’ chief executive said: “As the business of football gets more and more complex there is a greater need for intelligence and specialisation and this is a direction the club needs to go in.
“What it doesn’t do is dictate which players Sean is supposed to sign, but assists him in terms of tracking and landing those players.
“It also helps myself and the board to ensure that the club is getting value for money and we look forward to Lee starting work with us.”