Burnley have had a fine second half of the 2019-20 season after a slow start as Sean Dyche’s men are back to their best, so why don’t we reveal a ranking of how they’ve performed?
Everyone loves a ranking.
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Below we give each Burnley player a grade, ranking and group them together based on their season(s) so far.
If a Burnley player is listed in this ranking it is because they’ve played in more than five games in all competitions.
Nick Pope: What a season for Pope. With Tom Heaton sold and Joe Hart struggling, Pope is the undisputed number one and he is pushing Jordan Pickford all the way to become England’s first-choice goalkeeper. In a word, Pope is… solid.
Chris Wood: A monster up top, Wood has scored 11 goals in the Premier League and his partnership with Ashley Barnes batters opposition defenses. The New Zealand striker is a real handful and is becoming more clinical. When Barnes was out injured he really stood tall to lead the line impressively.
Dwight McNeil: Could be the breakout star in the Premier League. McNeil, still just 22 years old, is a product of Burnley’s academy and the slight winger has plenty of pace, vision and end product to become a Premier League star. Will the Clarets be able to hold onto him for much longer? He creates chances and can whip in wonderful crosses, which is perfectly suited to how Burnley play.
James Tarkowski: Alongside Ben Mee he is so reliable. Will Tarkowski and Mee win style points for the way they play? Nope. Is it effective? Hell yeah. A regular in the England setup, Tarkowski is severely underrated.
Jay Rodriguez: The local lad has been very good at times during his return to his beloved Burnley. Cracking goals against Man United and Chelsea are the standout moments but some times J-Rod doesn’t quite fit Burnley’s system. He works his socks off and has played out wide a lot. When he plays centrally off Wood or Barnes he is very dangerous. Has never recovered from his serious knee injury in 2014 but he’s adapted his game.
Erik Pieters: A really savvy pick up last summer and the Dutchman had a very good start to the season at left back before injury struck. Some great crosses, which again plays to Burnley’s strength. Not much between him and Charlie Taylor.
Matt Lowton: Probably just wins the battle with Phil Bardsley at right back and another solid, reliable defender.
Matej Vydra: He had to wait a long time for a run of games but boy has he taken it. With Barnes and Wood out injured, Vydra scored a stunner to beat Southampton, then scored against Bournemouth too just before play was suspended. A fox in the box who has scored so many goals in the Championship, the Czech striker kept working hard and got his just rewards.
Jeff Hendrick: Has popped up with a few goals but less influential than previous seasons. The Republic of Ireland midfielder works hard and has quality on the ball but a bit of an up and down season.
Johann Berg Gudmundsson (season impacted by injuries)
Joe Hart: Remember him? The former Man City star has fallen way down the pecking order for club and country as a string of poor performances in 2018-19 has put a mark against his name after less than stellar loan spells at Torino and West Ham before that. Hart, 33, is now well and truly second-choice at Burnley and he could struggle to land at another Premier League club.