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Sean Dyche expects James Tarkowski to keep improving after England bow

The Burnley defender won his first England cap playing in a back three in Tuesday’s 1-1 draw at Wembley.

James Tarkowski’s Burnley manager Sean Dyche expects the new England cap to develop even more following his international bow.

The 25-year-old won his first cap for his country in Tuesday’s 1-1 draw with Italy, completing 90 minutes at Wembley as part of a back three deployed by Three Lions boss Gareth Southgate.

Though Tarkowski conceded a controversial late penalty, only awarded after referee Deniz Aytekin consulted video evidence of his coming together with Federico Chiesa, Dyche was impressed with what he saw.

“I was really pleased,” Dyche said.

“I don’t think it’s easy anyway to play for England, to make your debut at home, to then play in a three, and on the left of a three…when you add all that in, with a new group, I thought he was very good.

“He was nice and calm, played steady, organised when he needed to, did the basics and just kept his simplicity. There’s more to come from him, I believe, for us and possibly (England) if Gareth uses him. I think he’s a very good player.”

Referee Aytekin had initially dismissed Chiesa’s penalty appeal only to point to the spot after witnessing the incident again on a pitch-side monitor.

In Dyche’s view, that was the incorrect decision.

“I’m all for VAR (but) I personally felt he probably misread it a little bit,” the Clarets manager added.

“I think it’ll be really good for referees actually to learn how players move differently. Tarky didn’t break his gait at all, the opposing player did – his foot goes out to the right, (in an) unnatural position, he’s already going down. I think that’s where it can be used well.

“But, when it’s in the early days, there will be things that are grey, moments when they’re unsure. The idea is the amount of decisions that are correct will improve, that’s what it’s there for.”

Tarkowski was not the only Burnley player with Southgate’s squad as uncapped goalkeeper Nick Pope was also part of the group, yet he was an unused substitute in the games against Holland and Italy.

Pope has enjoyed a fine season since replacing Tom Heaton, another England international, in September when the previous number one sustained a dislocated shoulder.

Heaton is now closing in on a return to first-team action having played four full games, either behind closed doors or with the development squad.

Dyche therefore faces an interesting dilemma over who to select between the sticks when Heaton is fully fit again.

“Tom’s really close to getting back to being involved. I spoke to him in the week about it and (it’s about) being almost overly assured he’s right,” Dyche explained.

“He’s going really well, he’s feeling really good. They’re the challenges you want as a manager. That’s why you bring players to the club.

“You don’t bring players in just for an easy ride. You want that competitive element. I certainly want to be put in a position where I have to choose and choose wisely because they’re performing well.”

The club have also announced they made a net profit of £22.2million for the financial year ending June 2017.

That figure, which came after the Clarets won promotion back to the Premier League in May 2016, compares to a net loss of £3.74million from the previous season.

Promotion led to Burnley’s turnover increasing threefold, while total staff costs rose from £38m to £61m.

Chairman Mike Garlick said: “While our wage bill is still one of the lower ones in the division, it is most certainly not the lowest and, coupled with our player-incentive schemes, we believe we now have a wage structure capable of attracting playing talent of a sufficient ability to vastly improve the chance of maintaining our place in the top flight, compared to our previous attempts.”

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