Saturday 23 March 2019

Anders Lindegaard will do more than make up the numbers at Burnley

Burnley have signed Anders Lindegaard on a free transfer
Burnley have signed Anders Lindegaard on a free transfer

Former Manchester United goalkeeper Anders Lindegaard is ready to fight for an unexpected Premier League comeback after arriving at Burnley on a free transfer.

The Denmark international has been training with the Clarets for the past week after club captain Tom Heaton dislocated his shoulder and signed until the end of the season on Thursday.

The 33-year-old has been without a club since leaving Preston at the end of last season and his last top-flight appearance came in April 2014, when he kept a clean sheet in the Red Devils' 4-0 win at Newcastle.

He also had a brief, unremarkable spell at West Brom, making a solitary League Cup appearance, but his new manager Sean Dyche insists Lindegaard is not simply making up the numbers or settling for a mentoring role with Heaton's current stand-in Nick Pope.

"We knew Anders had turned down a couple of things and he's got a good history. He's coming out of a little quiet spell but he's very motivated," said Dyche.

"I spoke to him as did (goalkeeping coach) Billy Mercer and he seems very motivated to really fight and get fit and sharp. I t's beginning to come back immediately.

"We've been impressed with that and he spoke of his hunger and desire to work hard, not just be here for the sake of it, to try to put pressure on the number one situation."

Lindegaard has no guarantee of appearing in the matchday squad against Huddersfield on Saturday, with Adam Legzdins also on the books having joined in the summer, but the veteran is not scared of the competition.

"I have seen the first two games Nick has played and he's done very well. I have a lot of respect for that," he told Clarets Player.

"I am here to try and sharpen up the competition in the goalkeepers' department and we'll see what happens down the line. I feel good physically and I still want to play. I come here with a good spirit and I have a lot of enthusiasm for getting started."

As for a prognosis on Heaton, who did not miss a league game for Burnley for three years after his arrival, Dyche was cautious about setting a timescale.

"It's too early yet, but they're really pleased with how the operation went," he said.

"It's pretty straightforward with regards to what the surgeon is used to seeing. Tom is fine, but it's a settling down period for now."

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