Burnley midfielder Ashley Westwood: "It's been a special place for me and long may that continue!"

Burnley midfielder Ashley Westwood says that he'd be open to seeing out his playing days at Turf Moor if the opportunity presented itself.

Thursday, 14th May 2020, 8:00 am
Updated Thursday, 14th May 2020, 10:11 am
Matteo Guendouzi of Arsenal tackles Ashley Westwood of Burnley during the Premier League match between Burnley FC and Arsenal FC at Turf Moor on February 02, 2020. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)

The 30-year-old recently triggered an extension in his existing contract which will keep him at the club until the end of the 2020/21 campaign.

Last season's player of the year has enjoyed every moment with the Clarets since making his switch from Aston Villa at the start of 2017 and has clocked up 101 appearances in all competitions.

The former Crewe Alexandra man described the move as a 'breath of fresh air' and he's hopeful that he can remain at the club beyond the expiry of his current deal.

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Burnely player Ashley Westwood reacts during the Premier League match between Burnley FC and Tottenham Hotspur at Turf Moor on March 07, 2020. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

"I'm buzzing, I'm here for another year, I've really enjoyed my time at the club since I joined," he said. "It's been a breath of fresh air. I've loved everything about it. The fans have taken to me and I've loved that.

"There were things being said, coming from Villa, with the fans asking 'what've you bought him for?' But they've stuck with me. It's been a special place for me and long may that continue.

"It feels brilliant. With my home life I'm back around family, which is nice. It's a special place, a special town, a special club. It would be nice [to stay longer], but everything like that will be put on hold.

"The lads who are out of contract need looking at first so the main thing for me is that I've got next year to look forward to. Who knows what will happen after that, but hopefully there are more years to come and I can see it out here.

"Since I walked through the door I've enjoyed the working environment because the lads are brilliant. They are all great lads, I knew Lowts really well, he told me all about it and he had a big part to play in me coming to Burnley.

"He told me how good it was and I can't speak highly enough of all the lads. Everyone who comes in enjoys it and anyone that leaves is always gutted they've gone. They always wish they were back here. It's a really special place and we're a special force."

Westwood has been given a new lease of life in the middle of the park under boss Sean Dyche. He's added more strings to his bow and grown to become a really creative force for the Clarets.

Westwood netted the winner at home to Leicester City, which activated a seven-game unbeaten run in the Premier League, and then scored directly from a corner against Southampton at St Mary's in February.

"I've been playing well for the last two years especially," said Westwood, who has also added five assists this term. "I think I've just slotted in and the gaffer has got me playing forward quicker and more often.

"Previously in my career I've been known as a player that keeps the ball and keeps it tidy, without losing possession. Things are starting to come off and I'm affecting the game more now and the number of assists I've got will show that.

"My pass completion rate might not be great, but I'm creating a lot more goals than I used to. That's been a big influence for me and the intensity of training has helped with my fitness. The lads really pull each other through. Everything has just clicked.

"I've been in a bad place with some of the clubs that I've been at, but it's unique here. You know when things aren't going well that you'll still enjoy going into work and you'll still love the people around you. We're all pulling in the same direction, we're all focused on the same goal and I've never known anything like it."