Burnley manager Sean Dyche has said it will be a challenge for the club to keep hold of their young winger Dwight McNeil amid speculation regarding interest from Manchester United.
The 20-year-old has been able to establish himself in the Clarets side in the previous two campaigns and has caught the eye with his bustling displays on the left flank.
Talk about a potential switch has followed, and Dyche discussed the difficulty Burnley have when it comes to keeping star players at Turf Moor, per David Anderson of the Daily Mirror:
"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."
Dyche added that "it's part of the reality of the club" because "we can't pay the wages that other clubs pay and some of the numbers that these players get are astronomical."
As Matt Maltby of the Mirror relayed, United have been linked with McNeil previously, who is said to be valued at £35 million.
Scouted Football recently summed up how much of an influence the youngster is having on the team this season:
Scouted Football @ScoutedFtbl
Dwight McNeil (20) among his Burnley team-mates in the Premier League this season: • Most assists • Most shot assists • Most crosses completed • Most dribbles completed • Highest xG Assisted total • Second-most tackles made • Third-most fouls won • Third-most minutes https://t.co/5ALKcD6cfo
McNeil is typically deployed on the left flank for Burnley and takes on the role of a traditional winger.
The England youth international has brilliant acceleration that allows him to march away from opposition players around the outside, while his pinpoint left-footed deliveries cause plenty of problems for defenders.
The Premier League Twitter account put his assist total into context recently given his tender years:
It would be intriguing to see him at a club like United, although Marcus Rashford has excelled on the left wing this season, meaning it would be difficult for McNeil to force his way into the team.
For now, there will be no major rush for McNeil to move away from Burnley, as he's getting regular minutes in the team and impressing on a consistent basis. There are still improvements he needs to make, too; given his talent, he should have netted more than two Premier League goals this term.