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Two of Burnley’s young professionals have ended the season playing League One football for Chesterfield and Oldham Athletic with them helping their respective clubs to comfortably avoid the drop into League Two.

Both looked under threat for a while but Chesterfield were seven points clear at the end of the season with Oldham one point further ahead.

Tom Anderson

Tom Anderson

Central defender Tom Anderson went to Chesterfield in a loan deal on the last day of the January transfer window. He went straight into their side and remained there. He made 18 league appearances in total to add to previous appearances for Hyde, Halifax and Lincoln in non-league and Carlisle where he made eight League Two appearances last season.

Tom’s certainly enjoyed his time at Sean Dyche’s old club and said this week in an interview with the Sheffield Star’s Graham Smyth: “Personally it’s been brilliant for me. It was my first bit of League One football and I’ve loved every minute of it. I started every game, although the last game didn’t go to plan, but I still started it.”

That last game was at Bradford City last Sunday when he came off five minutes before half time after being knocked out. “I had a concussion,” he said. “I was out for about a minute, then I came round and started to remember where I was. At first I didn’t know what day it was.”

Anderson has one year left at Burnley on his current contract but admitted that he’s learned a lot at Chesterfield. He said: “I’ve never played League One before and you always have that doubt in your mind, am I good enough? What’s going to happen if I’m not?

“Playing with Sam (Hird) was a great experience. He’s a very good player and has been brilliant for me. The management have been great, the gaffer took a big gamble on me. I wouldn’t have thought it was easy to bring someone in who hadn’t played League One before.”

What next for Anderson? “They (Burnley staff) wanted to see if I could go and play League One football and I’ve shown them I can do that. That’s another box ticked. I will have to wait and see what the club says, and maybe what Chesterfield say. I would like to do a full season, because this spell was about a third of the season.”

Cameron Dummigan

Cameron Dummigan

With Anderson performing well at Chesterfield, it’s been the same story at Oldham where Cameron Dummigan, who hadn’t played any first team football at all, has also featured strongly in League One.

Reports were coming in of outstanding performances from the Northern Ireland under-21 international in his early days at Oldham and he’s gone on to feature strongly in their excellent run in that moved them clear of the drop under John Sheridan.

He and Danny Lafferty, who was also on loan there, kept out former Burnley players Richard Eckersley and Joseph Mills on a regular basis. Eckersley was released after a short time there and Mills has followed suit at the end of the season.

Such were Dummigan’s performances that he landed himself the young player of the year award. He’s certainly very highly rated at Turf Moor and Sean Dyche said not too long ago that he would not have signed both of Matt Lowton and Tendayi Darikwa had he not had a long term injury in the previous season.

It will be interesting to see what is done next season, particularly with the emergency loan system scrapped. Maybe we’ll look to get him out to a Championship club for the first half of the season.

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