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1718 burnley jonathan walters 01 1000x500Burnley have confirmed the signing of Jonathan Walters from Stoke. He’s signed a two year deal with the Clarets and reports from the Potteries tell us we have brought a real Stoke favourite to Turf Moor.

Martin Spinks, writing for the Stoke Sentinel, wrote ahead of the transfer: “His exit will spell the end for one of the club’s most popular players of recent years. Since arriving from Ipswich for £2.75m in 2010, Walters has invariably delivered when it counts most and endeared himself to supporters appreciating his ceaseless endeavour and occasional brilliance.”

Former Port Vale legend Robbie Earle said of him: “Jon Walters must be one of Stoke City’s finest signings of the last decade. Look at the stats: More than 250 games played, 62 goals scored and thousands of miles covered by one of the hardest working players you could ever wish to see.

“So, if Walters does complete a move to Burnley then I am sure he will get a rousing reception whenever he returns to the bet365 Stadium. Let’s face it, he doesn’t owe Stoke anything.

“I would have loved to play in the same team as Walters. He’s 33 but runs around like an 18-year-old trialist, such is his enthusiasm. But don’t let that, or the fact he worked his way up from the lower divisions, overshadow the fact he has plenty of ability too. That combination has made him such a fine player for Stoke City. Let’s not forget his character either. It is priceless for a team to have someone who gives just as much whether they are playing against Manchester United or Bournemouth.”

Known at Stoke as SJW (Super Jon Walters), he started his career much closer to Turf Moor, in fact just a few miles down the road at Ewood Park. He left Blackburn aged 17 and moved to Bolton where he made a Premier league debut in August 2002 as a late substitute for Per Frandsen in a 2-1 home defeat against Charlton.

In two and a half years at Bolton, he made four substitute appearances in the league with his only start coming via a League Cup tie against Bury when he himself was substituted; Kevin Nolan coming on.

He played for Hull and Barnsley on loan and finally joined Hull on a permanent basis in February 2004 with the Humberside club then in League Two. It was the start of a period when he played his football in the lower divisions. During his time at Hull he had a short loan at Scunthorpe and then moved on free transfers to Wrexham and Chester. It looked for all the world that he would be a lower division footballer.

He was 23 when, in January 2007, Jim Magilton took him to Ipswich, and since then he’s never looked back. In three and a half seasons at Portman Road, he made 136 Championship appearances and that included his first game against us when he lined up for Ipswich at Turf Moor in a 2-2 draw in October 2007.

His performances for Ipswich prompted Tony Pulis to take him to Stoke in August 2010 and things have got even better since.

By then he’d made one appearance for the Republic of Ireland at under-21 level and he’d played one B international. Soon after joining Stoke he won his first full cap and has now made 49 full international appearances.

He’s also enjoyed seven good years at Stoke under Pulis and then Mark Hughes, but he’d fallen down the pecking order at the bet365 Stadium and that meant he was interested in talking to the Clarets. Those talks have led to today’s news with Walters now a Burnley player.

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