Matej Vydra joined Burnley this week, after a summer which saw the Czech international heavily linked with a move to Leeds United.
It was two months ago, midway through June, that Leeds began ‘exploring’ the idea of signing the Championship’s top-scorer. According to the Yorkshire Evening Post, Leeds had made Vydra a number one target after struggling to do a deal with free agent Abel Hernandez.
Later that month, the Daily Mail suggested a £12 million bid had been lodged, which now appears to have been off the mark.
Whatever the case, Vydra never went to Leeds. The club could not come to an agreement with the player, who appears to have had his heart set on the Premier League.
What has happened since is a complete transfer U-turn.
Because in mid-June, whilst Leeds were chasing the Burnley newbie, the Clarets were being linked with a striker of their own. As reported by The Sun, Burnley were interested in signing Senegalese attacker Moussa Konate from Amiens in a £8 million deal.
Fast forward two months and Konate is being linked with Leeds. According to L’Equipe, Leeds are interested in the Senegalese striker, who featured at the World Cup in Russia this summer. The Mirror (print edition, 08/08/2018, pg 51) have since reported that a £6 million move for the 25-year-old could be in the offing.
Two months, two players, two clubs and a complete reversal. If Leeds snap up Konate it would be quite the turnaround.
One winner and loser as Stoke City close in on signing Sam Clucas
Stoke look set to sign the Swansea midfielder on deadline day
Stoke City are closing in on a deal to sign Swansea midfielder Sam Clucas in a fee thought to be around £6 million, a shrewd bit of business from The Potters, who will be looking to improve on their Championship opening day defeat.
Manager Gary Rowett will be hoping the midfielder can hit the ground running and bring with him some much-needed versatility that his current midfield options lack.
Stoke haven’t been able to find a permanent central midfielder capable of running the show since Steven N’Zonzi’s departure in 2015. However, Clucas may just be the man to fill the void.
Winner – Stoke’s midfield
Clucas will bring with him a versatility to play anywhere in the midfield, a trait which their current options all lack and a quality vital to succeeding in the Championship.
During his time at Hull City, Clucas played left wing, left back, defensive midfield and a number 10 role; a testament to the 28-year-old’s ability and something Stoke can use to their advantage this season.
Clucas is comfortable on the ball and has a passing range which is second to none. If the Potters are going to gain promotion back to the Premier League they’ll need a midfielder with these kinds of attributes in their side.
Loser – Burnley
It seemed as though Burnley would be the destination for Clucas this season. However, in a sudden change of events Sean Dyche’s side lost out on their target.
This will be a blow for Dyche’s side, who have struggled terribly during this transfer window, despite securing European football for the first time in the clubs history last season.
It remains to be seen whether or not they’ll make a move for anyone else today before the deadline strikes, but a few deadline day signings wouldn’t go amiss for Dyche’s men.
Five ins and outs Burnley could complete on Deadline Day
A busy day lies ahead on and off the field for Burnley.
It is a massive day for Burnley, who have to balance transfer Deadline Day with a crucial Europa League match against Istanbul Basaksehir in Turkey.
Sean Dyche’s side are aiming to reach the Europa League group stages to provide regular European action at Turf Moor this season, which may see the side dip into the transfer market late on to land fresh faces.
Impressive deals have already seen the likes of Joe Hart and Alfie Mawson move to the club in recent days but more deals could be on the horizon, as we identify five that could be completed before the 5pm deadline.
Sofiane Hanni: Spartak Moscow
Burnley reportedly targeted Spartak Moscow’s Algerian international Sofiane Hanni back in January and may be encouraged to return with a late swoop for the midfielder following the latest reports from the continent.
Belgian outlet Voetbal 24 state that the 27-year-old is unhappy in Russia just months after his switch from Anderlecht, raising the possibility of a return to the Belgian Pro League – but Burnley could move to hijack a deal.
It is no secret that Sean Dyche wants to bolster his options in midfield and Hanni could be the ideal recruit.
Nahki Wells to Derby County
Following the capture of Matej Vydra from Derby County, there has been plenty of speculation that forgotten man Nahki Wells could move on loan to Frank Lampard’s side in return – and it’s a deal you are likely to hear plenty about on Deadline Day.
The Daily Mail stated earlier this week that Wells was set for a move to the Championship on loan as part of the agreement bringing Vydra to Lancashire, although a deal does not need to be completed today as the Football League loan window runs until the end of August.
28-year-old Wells made just nine Premier League appearances for the Clarets last season, failing to score a single goal.
Jay Rodriguez: West Brom
Speculation surrounding West Brom’s Jay Rodriguez has rumbled on throughout the transfer window, with Burnley keen to bring the England international to Turf Moor but finding it difficult to negotiate a deal with the Baggies.
Discussions could now switch to a deal involving a player in return, according to The Daily Mail (live blog, 8.08am), with Burnley said to have rebuffed West Brom’s request of £10m plus Sam Vokes for the signature of Rodriguez – which was rejected instantly.
That could provide the platform for further talks though, with Burnley not prepared to pay Rodriguez’s £20m asking price.
Sam Vokes to West Brom
The other man involved in a potential swap deal with West Brom is Sam Vokes, who is currently in Turkey with the squad preparing for tonight’s Europa League clash – but a deal for the forward does not need to be completed today.
The Daily Mail (live blog, 8.08am) states West Brom want Vokes as part of the deal taking Jay Rodriguez back to the Premier League and any agreement would likely be on loan, meaning the Baggies have until the end of the month to negotiate a deal.
“We definitely need more numbers, we’re not deep in numbers, we know that. We want quality numbers, we don’t just want any old player who can fill a slot, we want players who can be competitive.”
Sam Clucas: Swansea City
Another saga that has dragged on for a number of months, Burnley have found it difficult to negotiate a deal with relegated Swansea City for the services of Sam Clucas but the chase could heat up on Deadline Day.
Sky Sports states Wolves have expressed an interest in the midfielder, who saw a proposed £8m switch to Turf Moor fall through at the weekend after failing to agree personal terms with the Clarets – which puts Dyche’s side back at square one.
While Burnley may have moved on, a deal could be revived to stop Wolves from swooping.
One in, one out: The Deadline Day deals Burnley should prioritise
The Clarets could add further to their squad with Europa League football to contend.
Burnley are facing the busiest deadline day of any Premier League club, as they will face off against Istanbul Basaksehir in the Europa League qualifying rounds later tonight.
The club pulled off the high-profile signings of Joe Hart, Ben Gibson, and Matej Vydra in the last couple days, but should not be done just yet.
Here are two potential ins and outs that Burnley should prioritise today.
Sign Jay Rodriguez from West Brom
According to Sky Sports, Burnley are interested in buying English striker Jay Rodriguez, a move that would reunite the 29-year-old with his former club.
The signing would be a savvy one, as Sean Dyche is in the market for an experienced Premier League striker, and Rodriguez is a natural finisher who can become the perfect poacher for the Clarets.
The West Bromwich Albion striker started his career at Burnley, progressing through the academy and making more than a century of appearances for the Clarets from 2007 to 2012.
Before moving to Southampton, Rodriguez scored 29 league goals in his final two campaigns at Turf Moor.
A return to Burnley would benefit both parties, granting Jay Rodriguez a Premier League reprieve and gifting Dyche a classy centre-forward for the upcoming season.
Sell Nahki Wells
It was widely thought that Nahki Wells would be heading out on loan to Derby County as part of the deal that brought Vydra to Burnley, yet nothing has been announced as of yet with regards to Wells’ future.
The Bermudan attacker should be sold today, as he endured a poor 2017/18 campaign and seemingly has no future at Turf Moor.
Wells played a dismal 45 league minutes all season for the Clarets, making nine substitute appearances– while his longest involvement was a 10-minute cameo on the final day of the season.
Instead of a loan, Burnley would do well to offload the 28-year-old on a permanent basis and clear out underperforming players from Dyche’s squad.
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