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Walters not expecting struggle

11 August 2017 National Sport


Last Updated: 11/08/17 5:02pm

Jon Walters was on the scoresheet for the second time in pre-season

Jon Walters was on the scoresheet for the second time in pre-season

New Burnley striker Jon Walters says he has seen enough during his short time at the club to be confident there will be no case of “second season syndrome”.

The Republic of Ireland international joined the Clarets this summer from Stoke City on a two-year deal, after spending seven years at the Potters where he scored 62 goals in 269 appearances.

Sean Dyche’s side finished six points and two places clear of the relegation zone in their first campaign back in the top tier, but remain among the bookmakers’ relegation favourites.

They would not be the first team to over-achieve following promotion only to slip back at the next attempt, but Walters has no concerns on that score.

Sean Dyche says Andre Gray’s departure to Watford creates openings for other Burnley players

“A big danger for clubs coming up is that second season syndrome, and you don’t want to fall into that category,” Walters said.

“You get comfortable, think you’ve done it after a year – I don’t think we’ll let that happen here.

“With the players and the characters we have in the building we won’t let it.

“It’s a grounded group of boys and that helps, there’s no egos in the building. It wouldn’t be allowed here.”

The Republic of Ireland international has joined on a two-year deal

The Republic of Ireland international has joined on a two-year deal

The Republic of Ireland international has joined on a two-year deal

Burnley start their season with one of the toughest possible assignments, away to defending champions Chelsea.

Burnley sold Michael Keane to Everton earlier in the summer before Watford came calling for striker Andre Gray, but Walters sees opportunity where others find adversity.

“It’s a tough start to the season but bring it on, it could be a good time to play them,” he said of Chelsea.

“They may not have gelled, might have players coming back from internationals, a few injuries or suspensions. Maybe we can cause a few surprises.”

As for Gray’s eve-of-season departure, he added: “He was one player in a large group.

“There’s no one player the team plays off. The strength here is unity and the collective of players.

“You’ll miss certain elements he brings but it’s a good settled team and there are enough players to step up.”


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