Ex-Tottenham & Nottingham Forest man issues Burnley verdict ahead of Premier League return

Michael Dawson believes it might be tricky for Burnley to play their swashbuckling brand of football in the Premier League next season.
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The Clarets stormed to the Championship title in Vincent Kompany’s first season in charge, losing just three games and amassing 101 points.

While Kompany’s men earned plenty of plaudits for their style of play, Dawson – a club ambassador at his former club Tottenham Hotspur – has suggested they might have to slightly alter their approach in the top flight.

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Nevertheless, the 39-year-old – who also played for Hull City and Nottingham Forest – wouldn’t be surprised if Burnley staved off relegation in their first season back.

He said: “After Burnley were relegated from the Premier League in 2021/22, they lost the likes of Nick Pope, Ben Mee, James Tarkowski, Wout Weghorst, plus players like Phil Bardsley and Aaron Lennon, senior professionals. Then they lost an important player in Ashley Westwood to injury at the start of the season.

“It looked like they were in trouble, but Vincent Kompany and Burnley’s recruitment has been unbelievable.

“They turned to Belgium, where Kompany used to be with Anderlecht, and picked up good, young players. Taylor Harwood-Bellis came from City on loan, I played with Arijanet Muric at Forest, so he knew the Championship and the way Kompany had them playing, full credit to him.

Do you expect Vincent Kompany to change tact in the Premier League?Do you expect Vincent Kompany to change tact in the Premier League?
Do you expect Vincent Kompany to change tact in the Premier League?
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“In the end, they ran away with the Championship. It will be tough next season to play in that style in the Premier League, however, the three teams promoted last season – Forest, Bournemouth, Fulham – all stayed up.

“Burnley have proved a lot of people wrong and they will look to build on that with Kompany next season.”

While the Clarets are widely expected to strengthen in various areas this summer, Dawson picked out two members of the current squad who he expects to shine.

The former centre-back added: “I’ll go with two – Anass Zaroury and Manuel Benson – both wingers, they impressed last season, and those wide players are so important for the way Burnley play, and they both scored big goals in the Championship.”