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Burnley line up EFL manager as potential successor to Sean Dyche

Burnley line up an EFL manager as successor to Sean Dyche who is questioning his future according to reports on Thursday.

He is said to be eyeing an exit from Turf Moor at end of season, despite having two years left on his contract.

He could be set to walk away prematurely from his deal due to growing frustrations in which he is disappointed by the failure to agree contract extensions for senior players.

There are claims that the Clarets are considering Bristol City boss Lee Johnson and Mark Hughes as possible candidates to replace Dyche.

Johnson has been with the Robins since 2016 after previously managing Barnsley and Oldham Athletic, both in League One at the time.

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Of all three of those clubs to have managed in his career, it’s his current Bristol City that boasts him best record with 84 wins, 54 draws and 76 defeats, giving him a win % of 39.9. For his time at Barnsley, it was 39.2% and at Oldham, 35.0%.

He led the Tykes to the EFL Trophy Final in 2016, in which his successor Paul Heckingbottom managed to claim the cup win.

In the 2017–18 season, Johnson led the club to the semi-finals of the EFL Cup, defeating several Premier League clubs in the lead up, notably defeating José Mourinho’s Manchester United. During the semis, Bristol City exited the competition after a 3–5 aggregate defeat to eventual champions Manchester City, a game in which saw Pep Guardiola praise Johnson for his side’s style of play.

In May 2019, he signed a new four-year contract with the Robins, keeping him until the summer of 2023.

He has guided the club to finishes of 18th (15/16), 17th (16/17), 11th (17/18) and 8th (18/19) – and this season, they currently sit 10th in the Championship table, just two points off the playoffs with eight games remaining.

Out of work Mark Hughes is another manager that Burnley are looking at.

It was earlier this season that Mark Hughes was reported to be in talks about replacing Gomes, especially as he has a strong relationship with Reading sporting director Mark Bowen (who eventually appointed himself) after they worked together at Wales, Blackburn, Manchester City, Fulham, QPR, Stoke and Southampton.

Hughes was last in charge of Southampton, they made positive signings in that season’s summer window, but made a poor start and on the 2nd of December 2018, with the club 18th in the table, Hughes was dismissed. He was replaced by Ralph Hasenhüttl.

It is also said to be down to a breakdown in relationship with chairman Mike Garlick over contract extension woes and lack of budget for transfer window.

He has been at the club nearly 10 years, where he’s earned himself an outstanding record, which would put other Premier League club on alert.

Crystal Palace and West Ham have said they want the 48-year-old in the past, while Bournemouth and Aston Villa could want to speak him if they are in the market for a new manager this summer in the event of relegation.

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So, what was said by the Burnley manager when asked if he was questioning his future due to contract frustrations?

He said: “I just look at the facts and try and share a view on that.

“Emotion sometimes creeps into that but not very often or I try and park it quickly.

“I think the business opportunities that are available, and when they become available, we have got to get on top of them. I just want to give a factual view of the situation. That is all I have tried to do on this. It is a situation that I think could have been changed.”

He repeatedly said during his press conference ahead of the game with Watford on Thursday that this was the first occasion during his seven and a half year tenure that he had questioned the hierarchy.

And he said last week that while he was frustrated at the situation, he wasn’t ‘less happy’.

Dyche has admitted that the task at the club is becoming harder each season given the financial restraints in place compared to the majority of teams in the league.

“Yes, (with) the ongoing effects of the financial control of the club,” he said with the Clarets chief hoping to see the purse strings loosened to enable him to strengthen his squad during the transfer window.

“I said probably two years ago that we needed to stretch the finance levels and that is an ongoing challenge at Burnley Football Club.

“We are not in any financial difficulties that is for sure.”

Burnley’s players are aware of Dyche’s feelings, with his possible departure understood to be the talk of the dressing room, which would leave many of them devastated.

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