English Premiership

Dyche: No 'big drama' with making Mee captain

Ben Mee (Getty Images)
Ben Mee (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Burnley manager Sean Dyche says his choice of Ben Mee to be the club's new captain was an easy one for him to make.

Dyche was in need of a new club skipper with the departure of keeper Tom Heaton to Aston Villa for £8 million in the summer.

The Clarets boss was always going to lose one of his top-flight keepers and with Heaton the oldest of the three at 33, and heading into the final year of his contract at the club, he was the one to go.

It also helped that there was a big-money offer, thought to be around £8m from newly-promoted Aston Villa, so his sale became a no-brainer. Villa opened their account in the Premier League with an away defeat at Tottenham.

Nick Pope appears to be the new number one with Joe Hart on the bench but the departure of Heaton left space as skipper.

Mee was always the obvious first choice for the boss as he was handed the armband for the past season and a half whilst Heaton was out injured so giving it him back was an easy decision.

"Let’s face it, Ben has been captain for a season before, and a half a season last season, so I don’t think that is a big drama," Dyche said.

Mee started his spell as skipper keeping a clean sheet in the comfortable home win over Southampton at the weekend where he partnered James Tarkowski in the heart of the defence.

Dyche had special praise for the way his other first-choice centre-half Tarkowski has handled himself this summer after he was linked with a multi-million pound move away from the club.

Leicester City boss Brendan Rodgers was keen to land a new centre-half after selling Harry Maguire to Manchester United for a record £80 million.

One of the players he was linked with was Tarkowski and there was talk of a £40 million move but the Clarets were in no mood to sell one of their star men and refused to bring the reported asking price down so the deal never materialised.

Dyche was pleased to keep the player at Turf Moor and was quick to praise the defender for remaining calm and focused whilst all the speculation was swirling around him.

He told the Lancashire Telegraph: "Tarky deserves a big mention, there has been a lot of noise outside of our camp, but to stay focused on the job, I have total respect for him."

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