Burnley's Erik Pieters 'not happy' with situation at Turf Moor

Erik Pieters has voiced his displeasure regarding a lack of game time for Burnley this season.

Monday, 20th September 2021, 2:43 pm
Updated Monday, 20th September 2021, 2:46 pm
Erik Pieters of Burnley shields the ball from Jamal Lewis of Newcastle United during the Carabao Cup Second Round match between Newcastle United and Burnley at St. James Park on August 25, 2021 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England.

An 11-minute cameo in the Clarets' 2-0 defeat against Liverpool at Anfield — when replacing Johann Berg Gudmundsson — is all the Dutchman has been handed in the club's first five Premier League games.

The ex-Stoke City man, who played more than 100 times for PSV Eindhoven, was involved in Burnley' s Carabao Cup victory over Newcastle United at St James's Park and he's in line to start the third round tie at home to Rochdale.

However, he's desperate for more minutes on the pitch. "I am not happy. Simple. I want to play," he said.

"I always want to play in my career and I want to play as long as possible because I am ready to play. I am healthy and fit and am feeling really well.

"But with new players coming in I want to help them. At the end of the day we here all together and we have to make sure we get the best result.

"If I need to help, for example Charlie [Taylor] do bits and pieces, then I will help Charlie. It is not Charlie's choice to play, it is the gaffer's choice, and at one point you have to accept it and help the team."

Pieters is one of nine senior professionals out of contract at Turf Moor this summer and, while discussions over his future haven't been broached just yet, he feels he's done enough to prove his worth to the squad.

"It never gets easier," said Pieters. "I can accept that when you get to a certain point in your career that you say 'okay I will be good for the team, I will be there if he needs me'

"But I am feeling really good, my fitness is up, I am confident and at this point in my career I just want to play football and it will never get easier to sit on the bench.

"That moment when I realise I am sitting there in second position is not in my being. I just want to play football for as long as possible and as much as I can."

He added: "My contract ends at the end of the season, but you can do more than play games to show you are good value for Burnley and this team. I think I have shown that already in the past.

"They kmnow who I am, what they can get from me, and they know I am always ready to be there if necessary."