More to come from Tarky for club and country
Clarets boss Sean Dyche feels there is more to come for club and country from James Tarkowski.
The Burnley centre back made his England debut in the 1-1 draw with Italy at Wembley, and impressed, despite giving away a late penalty for the Azzurri’s equaliser, after a VAR review.
Tarkowski has been outstanding for the Clarets since making his first Premier League start almost a year ago at Crystal Palace, and his reward came in the form of a first call up for the Three Lions.
Dyche was thrilled for the 25-year-old: “Really pleased. I don’t think it’s easy anyway to play for England, to make your debut at home, to then play in a three, and on the left of a three.
“When you add all that in, with a new group, I thought he was very good.
“He was nice and calm, played steady, organised when he needed to, did the basics and just kept his simplicity.
“There’s more to come from him, I believe. From us and possibly (England) if Gareth (Southgate) uses him. I think he’s a very good player.”
Tarkowski could yet make the squad for the World Cup in Russia, and Dyche assesses his chances: “We’ll see. I know how hard it is to pick a team.
“They are sort of recruiting – who's on form, who can they get in, who's in the squad. It's a version of club management.
“I think he’s got a chance and we’ll see. It’s fantastic for Popey as well.
“Both their stories but particularly Popey, to come in late.
“I’m really pleased with how we’ve handled him and how he's accepted it because that's the key.
“Popey stayed clear minded with the group he worked with last season when he wasn't involved at all.
“We did reassure him that he was growing into what we do.
“At the end of last season we used him on the bench and he got a feel for it. This year when he's been called upon he's been ready and has delivered very well.”
As regards the controversial penalty award against Tarkowski. Dyche underlined his backing for VAR, but few.s it could be improved further: “I'm all for VAR. I personally felt he probably misread it a little bit.
“I think it’ll be really good for referees actually to learn how players move differently.
“Tarky didn’t break his gait at all, the opposing player did – his foot goes out to the right, unnatural position, he's already going down.
“I think that's where it can be used well. But, when it's in the early days, there will be things that are grey, still with VAR moments when they're unsure.
“The idea is the amount of decisions that are correct will improve, that's what it's there for.”