Burnley's Player of the Year Josh Cullen looking forward to the challenge of the Premier League

Burnley midfielder Josh Cullen is looking forward to testing himself in 'the best league in the world'.
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The Clarets' Player of the Year, who also won the recognition of his team-mates, will finally get the chance to return to the Premier League.

The 27-year-old made just three appearances in the top flight for West Ham United prior to his release in October 2020.

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He made his debut in the division with a cameo in the Hammers' 3-0 win over Liverpool at Anfield nearly eight years ago, replacing Diafra Sakho.

Burnley players celebrate

The EFL Sky Bet Championship - Burnley v Cardiff City - Monday 8th May 2023 - Turf Moor - BurnleyBurnley players celebrate

The EFL Sky Bet Championship - Burnley v Cardiff City - Monday 8th May 2023 - Turf Moor - Burnley
Burnley players celebrate The EFL Sky Bet Championship - Burnley v Cardiff City - Monday 8th May 2023 - Turf Moor - Burnley

Cullen then came off the bench against Southampton and Chelsea during the 2018-19 campaign, stepping in for Cheikhou Kouyaté and João Mário respectively.

"For me, the ultimate aim is to test myself at the top level and play against the best players in the best league in the world," he said. "To have that chance to do that next year and challenge myself is something I'm really looking forward to and hopefully we can all step up and do well next season.

"It would be unbelievable [to play in the Premier League], it's what you set out to do as a youngster. When you're going through the academy the ambition is to play at the top of the game and the Premier League is the best league in the world. To get promotion and play in the Premier League is amazing."

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Cullen, who was taken from the London Stadium to RSC Anderlecht by boss Vincent Kompany, was the Manchester City legend's sixth addition at Turf Moor in the summer.

The Republic of Ireland international played 50 games in all competitions and scored his only goal with the decisive finish against Stoke City at the bet365 Stadium in the final game of 2022.

After Burnley won the Championship title at a canter, he said: "It's been good hasn't it. We probably couldn't have wished for it to go any better.

"To get over one hundred points, to win the league, to get promoted, if anyone would have said that at the start of the season we would have snapped anyone's hand off.

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"To be able to do that with a new squad coming together; a lot of new faces, new staff and credit to the lads that were here last year who have bounced back from their disappointment. It's been an unbelievable season and I'm just happy to have played a part in it."

But there won't be much time to rest ahead of the new campaign. Cullen is expected to feature when "The Boys in Green" continue their UEFA European Championship qualifying campaign against Greece and Gibraltar next month.

"I've got a couple of weeks and then I've got internationals with Ireland so it never really stops," he said. "As footballers when you love your job like we do, once you've had a week, ten days off then you're itching to get back to it.

"The break I do get I'll enjoy, go away with my fiancée and my family and enjoy it but once that time is over then it's looking forward to the Premier League and we're all excited by that challenge."