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Man Utd & McNeil suitors warned they need ‘war chest’, but Burnley boss Dyche admits sale could happen

19:26 GMT+3 14/03/2020
Dwight McNeil Burnley 2019-20
The Clarets manager says those at Turf Moor are under no financial pressure to sell, but they will not stand in the way of any ambitious performers

Manchester United are among those being linked with Burnley winger Dwight McNeil, having previously seen him slip their academy net, and Clarets boss Sean Dyche admits that he may have to part with a prized asset if suitors find a transfer “war chest”.

The Clarets are under no financial pressure to sell any of their senior stars, but money talks in the recruitment market.

Dyche is aware of that, having brought in a £25 million ($31m) fee when selling Michael Keane to Everton in 2017, and is not about to hinder the progress of any ambitious performers.

McNeil falls into that category, as a 20-year-old with five Premier League goals and 10 assists to his name across 51 top-flight appearances, and interest is building in his potential.

Burnley have no decision to make at present, and hope that remains the case, but Dyche accepts that his hand may be forced if a big-spending outfit such as United put a formal offer on the table.

He told reporters when quizzed on the future of a hot prospect: “There’s a reality when players come in, particularly when we’ve developed them as lower-league players for less money or the likes of Dwight McNeil.

“At some point those players, not all of them, but some of them get to a point where the club will sell them.

“Just by the natural economics they’re going to go ‘well, OK, what did we bring that player in for and what’s the offer?’. The difference is that offer is now stretched because we don’t actually need the money.

“In the past, we always had to do certain things. Now we don’t have to do them because we’re in a very strong financial position.

“Keano went and it was a case of we can’t refuse that money. Now we can. That’s the difference, although the basic principle is still there.

"If a player does so, so well and enough big interest comes from the top of the market, the chances are at some point that situation breaks and that player goes.”

Dyche added on the threat of losing key men: “It’s part of the reality of the club, we’re not giants in the Premier League.

“We can’t pay the wages that other clubs pay and some of the numbers that these players get are astronomical.

"They’re miles above what we can pay.

“When that moment comes, I have to factor that in a little bit as well and say ‘look, this is a chance for them to go and get whatever that may be and we can’t compete with that’.

“The business comes first, of course, but there’s also a bit of moral fibre there and we can’t stop a player from having that opportunity.

“But I can assure you it will only happen if the numbers are correct.

"The numbers now in our world are high and we’re in a position to say no, we don’t need to sell anyone.

"So if anyone wants to come for any of our players, they had better have a war chest.”