James Tarkowski thinks his defensive partner Nathan Collins has the talent to go straight to the top.
Collins, a summer signing from Stoke, has entered the Burnley backline for the past two months in the absence of injured captain Ben Mee and has really caught the eye on both sides of the pitch, earning a nomination for the Premier League Player of the Month for April.
Tarkowski said of the 21-year-old: “Collo has been outstanding. You forget how young he is because he looks so old, but he played at an incredible level considering it’s his first season in this league.
“He has enormous potential. He’s played quite a few games this year, way more than a lot of guys his age, and he’s played really well. It’s still a learning experience for him, he still has time to improve and improve his game, but the level he’s performing at now at such a young age, he can definitely go all the way to the top. .
Mee may not feature in the squad again this season after suffering a broken fibula, but is still playing a key role in Burnley’s fight against relegation as part of caretaker boss Mike Jackson’s behind-the-scenes squad.
Tarkowski praised his longtime teammate, saying: “I like him next to me. He did well because it’s not an easy position to be in. People call “skaffer” because, gaffer or skip, we don’t really know what to call it.
“It’s good for him because he’s still there. You can sometimes be a bit on the side when you are injured, but obviously he is always a great help for the group. Ben is still a bit too young to talk about his managerial career, but he’s been great at it.
Many eyebrows were raised when Sean Dyche was sacked last month and Under-23 boss Jackson was put in charge, but the former defender has overseen an impressive revival, with 10 points in four games , knocking Burnley out of the bottom three ahead of a clash with Aston Villa. the Saturday.
Tarkowski said: “He probably didn’t congratulate himself enough, I think he’s trying to put it all on us. That’s the kind of person he is. But he really reminded us of who we are, we we have a lot of players who have been at this level for a long time, a lot of experience and a lot of good players.
“These details let us down, but he reminded us that we are capable of winning games and performing well and I think we have proven that over the past few weeks. He has been great.
Tarkowski has been one of Dyche’s most successful signings, making over 200 appearances since moving from Brentford in 2016 and earning two caps for England.
The 29-year-old said: “We probably got stuck under the old coach a bit, and it wasn’t the coach’s fault, it was just the way the game went for us. We became very rigid, very predictable, we were easy to read.
“Sometimes just this new nudge from the manager that everyone is talking about, it’s hard to explain what it is, but for some reason it works. When the manager left, it was strange at first because we were all so used to the environment we were in, but it worked, so for now it seems like it was the right decision.
Tarkowski’s future was again irrelevant as a topic of discussion but it seems certain he will leave Turf Moor when his contract expires this summer.
The defender is unlikely to be short of suitors and he still hopes to return to the English setup.
“I haven’t given that up, that’s for sure,” he said. “The ambition is still there. I’m still quite young and feel like I have something to give, so we’ll see what the future holds.
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