Sunday, October 2, 2022

In-Form First Team Star Signs New Burnley Deal: Sean Dyche Impressed?

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Anirban Sarkar
Anirban Sarkar is a former columnist of The 4th Official. A huge East Bengal fan and has travelled over 1000 miles to see his team in action.

Burnley keeper Nick Pope has been rewarded with a new three year deal for his inspiring performances on the Clarets’ goal. Following the injury, to Tom Heaton who dislocated his shoulder, Pope stepped up and has been almost error-less so far.

Barring the Crystal Palace match in which Sean Dyche sought his help, Pope has been given the charge of the goal and the 25-year-old has put in some stellar displays to keep Burnley in the hunt. In the last three matches, he kept two clean sheets and the gaffer seems to be very happy with the kind of performances he has given so far.

This could be Pope’ best chance to attract all the limelight as replacing a keeper like Heaton is a massive task and the season has just started. Pope was delighted to have signed an extension which will now keep him at the Turf Moor till 2020.

“I’m delighted to sign a new contract and extend my stay here. I’ve been really happy since I signed last year, so I’m really pleased to get it done. We are still growing as a club and I’m growing as a player. That’s what I wanted to do when I first signed,” he said after he put pen to paper.

Pope arrived from Charlton the last summer and has gone from strength to strength to reach this position. The keeper has already racked up a number of saves emulating the heroics of Heaton. The English international made the highest number of saves last season which was a key reason behind Burnley’s meteoric rise.

Being a 25-year-old, it would be too soon to compare him with Heaton but the way he is moving forward, it could be an alarming situation for the first choice goalkeeper at the club. His progress could turn the attention of Gareth Southgate who is due to announce his World Cup squad.

Currently, the Three Lions’ squad consists of four goalkeepers- Joe Hart, Fraser Forster, Jordan Pickford and Jack Butland and although Pope has had limited number of games under his belt, he has performed better than at least a couple of those names.

Pope was the third choice behind Heaton and Paul Robinson last season. But following Robinson’s retirement, he has moved to number two position. He is likely to be the preferred choice till Heaton returns and will have the chance to trigger the attention of the England gaffer.

The 25-year-old is destined to play at the highest stage and Sean Dyche has made a smart move by signing him up on a new deal.

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