Burnley squad stretched for Europa League clash

Sean Dyche is facing something of a juggling act in Turkey given how stretched Burnley’s squad is for the Europa League clash against Istanbul Basaksehir.

After narrowly seeing off Aberdeen last week, the Clarets’ first European dalliance in 52 years continues against the side that finished third in last season’s Super Lig.

Istanbul Basaksehir are likely to prove tough opposition in the third qualifying round, especially given Burnley’s lack of options for Thursday’s first leg.

“We’re a little bit limited and we’ll have a few decisions to make,” boss Dyche told a press conference.

“Chris (Wood) has an infection from a bite that has caused a reaction. Steven (Defour) is behind Robbie (Brady) at the moment, so we’re down to 17 players.

“But Joe (Hart) and Ben (Gibson) have travelled for a reason – to be included if needed.”

With Nick Pope injured and Tom Heaton also unavailable, Hart could make his debut in Istanbul after completing his surprise move from Manchester City.

“He’s in good shape and clear-minded,” Dyche said. “He’s still hungry and got a desire to be the best he can be.

“If he’s playing well he’ll earn the right to play. He knows he’ll have to earn it. He’s bought into it.”

While Hart and fellow new boy Gibson could feature, striker Matej Vydra has stayed at home after his move from Derby.

“He’s a bit behind the curve fitness-wise,” Dyche said. “He’s got to catch up, but he’s different to the strikers we’ve got.

“He offers a different positional sense, can work off the shoulder or in a number 10.”

Football Paradise Staff Reporter

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