Player Analysis: What Dale Stephens would bring to Burnley
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Brighton & Hove Albion central-midfielder Dale Stephens has been linked with Burnley as the Clarets look to add to their squad before October 5th.

The Athletic have reported a fee of £1m rising to £2.5m being accepted by the Seagulls. This would be ideal for Burnley who rarely pay big fees for signings.

  •  Statistics

Stephens has made 99 Premier League appearances, all of which have  been for Brighton. The defensive midfielder has scored one and assisted five, showing his defensive style. The 31-year-old averages 48.33 passes-per-match and has completed 4,785 total passes in his 99 games.

Defensively Stephens has made 261 tackles, 167 interceptions, 152 clearances, 724 recoveries and has won 402 duels. As a central-midfielder he as brilliant defensive output. He has made 400  career appearances with his latest being an EFL Cup game for Brighton. 

In his 400 appearances he has netted 39 times and assisted 37. Whilst playing he has averaged a 1.48 points-per-game ratio.

  • How he will fit

At Brighton Stephens has played most of his games in a 4-4-2 system, similar to the one Sean Dyche plays for Burnley. At 31 he will bring plenty of experience to he Clarets and add depth to a depleted squad. Ashley Westwood and Josh Brownhill have been the go to partnership since the injury to Jack Cork however this could be adapted. 

Not many Premier League sides play with two strikers but because Burnley do it means they need more defensively solid central-midfielders. This allows the wingers to get further forward and supply the strikers with crosses. 

This has been adapted with the injury to Johann Berg Gudmundsson which relies on the wide right player being more defensive allowing Brownhill to go forward. However, Brownhill has featured on the right before meaning Stephens would come into central-midfield and providing more defensive support if the deal went through.

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