Burnley's first foreign transfer link
(Baptiste Fernandez/Getty Images)

Burnley have held talks with SCO Angers over their 25-year-old midfielder Baptiste Santamaria, as reported by The Mail Online

Santamaria is highly thought of and has been compared to N'golo Kante for his style of play. 

However, for £12m some fans would like to see the money go to areas that need it more with the club already having three first-team quality central-midfielders.

  • What We Know

Santamaria played 28 times for the Ligue 1 side last season completing 99% of the potential minutes available. Since his professional debut for Tours FC in Ligue 2, Santamaria has gone on to make 242 career appearances with a 1.25 points-per-game ratio. 

His experience at the top level of France is not under question with 134 of his appearances coming in the Ligue 1. The former French national also played three times for the U20's.

The predominantly defensive midfielder is Angers' key man and the club's manager Stephane Moulin has previously admitted he could lose his star player.

  • The Right Fit?

Sean Dyche has transformed Burnley into a defensively sound, hardworking and direct footballing side, and although this has benefitted results-wise, it makes it a lot harder to sign players with only certain types being classed as a 'Dyche player'.

Santamaria is a defensive-minded player who likes to roam in front of the back four, picking up loose balls and distributing them further forward. 

Burnley's two main central-midfielders in recent times have been Ashley Westwood and Jack Cork who are both defensive-minded. Having two CM's in a 4-4-2 that are both defensive allows the wingers to be more attacking and makes it less important for strikers to drop deep. This suits Burnley's squad well with Dyche liking to get the Best out of McNeil's attacking qualities, as well as leaving two strikers up top for the direct balls coming from the defence.

Therefore Santamaria would be similar to Cork and Westwood coupled with a French style of football and would bring more positives to Burnley than negatives, even if he will cost £12m.

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