Dyche explains reasons behind midfielder’s Clarets exit

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Sean Dyche says Steven Defour is 'making very good progress' after calf surgery but will not be fit until next season at the earliest.

Burnley boss Sean Dyche has explained the reasons behind the sale of Steven Defour after he made his debut in Belgium over the weekend.

There were a few eyebrows raised when the talented 31-year-old was sold to Antwerp in the close season and, after he made his debut for the Belgium side in their win at the weekend less than two weeks after joining them, there were further questions asked as to why he was allowed to leave.

The Clarets moved for Chelsea star Danny Drinkwater over the summer to add more strength to their midfield after deciding to allow Defour to leave.

Dyche revealed the reason he was sold was down to the injury problems he had suffered over the past few seasons at the club and they thought it was best for him.

The Belgium international had returned to full training with the Clarets but had not featured in the first team since he picked up an fresh injury in the FA Cup defeat to Manchester City back in January.

An £8m signing from Anderlecht back in 2016 the midfielder suffered a succession of injuries, mainly related to a knee problem, in his three years at Turf Moor restricting his appearances to just 56 for the club, scoring twice in that time.

Dyche says the decision to allow him to leave was a good one for both parties.

“I think it was a number of things, his personal situation, his injury situation, the club wanted to do the business side of it,” the Clarets boss told Lancs Live.

“It is shame because I believe if he was fit all the time he would have turned into a very, very good Premier League player and a consistent performer in the Premier League because he is a highly talented player.”

Defour still had a season to run on his present contract at the club but the two sides came to an agreement to cancel his last year and let him move on.

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