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Striker Chris Long enjoyed three loans in League One during his three years as a Burnley player, at Fleetwood Town, Bolton Wanderers and more recently Northampton Town and yesterday, following his release from the Clarets, he went back to Fleetwood having signed a two year deal.

1516 burnley chris long 00 400x500He became new manager Joey Barton’s seventh signing for Fleetwood, the second of three signings made yesterday, and Long’s former Burnley team Barton said: “The signing of Chris gives us some really good competition for places in the front areas.

“By bringing Longy in, it gives us variety in the front line. He brings pace and the ability to play in any of the three positions at the top of the pitch. We feel that if you’re going to have a healthy season, you need healthy competition and we feel we’ve got that now, it’s exciting times ahead.”

Long, who was at Fleetwood during the first half of the 2016/17 season said of his return: “It’s good to be back. I have some unfinished business here. I want to have a similar start to what I had last time I was here, and maybe even go one better. I want to kick on and be ready when called upon by the manager.

“I believe I am coming back here more of a complete player and whilst away I have experienced the highs and the lows in football. With me being 23-years old, it is all valuable experience.

“Last year when I played against Fleetwood, it was nice to see the lads who were here when I was and it’s always nice to see them, and it will be good to play alongside them again. I just can’t wait to get going and working hard on and off the field of play.”

He admitted that Barton was an influence in his return. He added: “The manager’s drive was one reason I have come back. He will help me improve my game even more, and it is also a club that is going on the right direction. I really want to be a part of that and see this club in the Championship, and I believe the gaffer is the right man to do that to be honest.

“You’ve got to earn your place in this team and that’s why competition for places is very important. When you get the nod, you need to impress and get your goals on the pitch, however you need to crack on and work hard on and off the field of play.”

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