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It’s become customary for some of the club’s younger players to be part of the pre-season trip and this year is no exception. Three years ago, the first pre-season with Sean Dyche, saw such as Alex Coleman and Jason Gilchrist in Cork and it is probably no surprise that this year it is the goalkeeper and midfield position that has been supplemented.

Tom Heaton and Stephen Ward won’t return until next Monday after being involved in the Euros; Sam Vokes will return a week later after he and Wales reached the semi-final. That leaves just Paul Robinson as the only senior goalkeeper and that has led to Northern Ireland under-19 international Conor Mitchell and this year’s youth team graduate Tony Aghayere both making the trip.

Aiden O'Neill has joined the squad for the pre-season trip
Aiden O’Neill has joined the squad for the pre-season trip

Alongside them is Australian Aiden O’Neill, a midfielder who pushed himself in and around the first team towards the end of last season.

The squad that has travelled is: Matt Lowton, Danny Lafferty, Michael Keane, Ben Mee, Andre Gray, Dean Marney, Michael Kightly, David Jones, Paul Robinson, Rouwen Hennings, Lukas Jutkiewicz, Fredrik Ulvestad, George Boyd, Chris Long, James Tarkowski, Tendayi Darikwa, Kevin Long, Ashley Barnes, Tom Anderson, Scott Arfield, Cameron Dummigan, Conor Mitchell, Tony Aghayere, Aiden O’Neill.

Meanwhile, the Clarets are actively looking to bring in new players. Yesterday’s news was that a bid for Derby’s Jeff Hendrick had been turned down as had a second offer for Dale Stephens, the Brighton midfielder.

Speaking after the first training session at the training base in France, manager Sean Dyche explained: “There are still a few things happening back home with other players who probably won’t make this trip, but we are looking to add to the group.

“There are always a million questions at this time, but I’ve said it so many times, we are in a very good position as a club. We are back in the Premier League with some good finance behind us, but the finance in the Premier League is a whole new level. It’s not just the fees, it’s the ongoing contracts.

“Our market is still a careful one and we can’t go throwing numbers around. We’ve all seen some clubs are doing that and it is a difficult task, but we still think we’ve got players who can adjust into our squad and sometimes you have to be patient, including myself.

“I want the players in as early as I can, but other clubs don’t just go ‘of course, have our players’. It doesn’t quite work like that. Often one or two moves start the system rolling, but we are not strong enough to make the wheels turn by throwing in enormous fees. We’ve got money; I’ve never denied that. It’s just how we can use that money and to what level.”

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