Chelsea striker Patrick Bamford is on the verge of agreeing a move to newly-promoted Premier League outfit Burnley. The 22-year-old is expected to complete a season-long loan switch to Lancashire imminently after manager Sean Dyche confirmed following his side's emphatic 3-0 defeat at Stamford Bridge on Saturday (27 August) that only the formalities of the deal were left to be completed.
"Patrick is close," he was quoted as saying by the Clarets' official website. "It's just a few I's getting dotted and t's getting crossed. There are a number of other things closer too, but we still have to get them over the line, so we'll wait and see."
As is typically the case with many of Chelsea's younger players, 2014/15 Championship Player of the Year Bamford, who began his career at Nottingham Forest, has become something of a footballing nomad over recent years after Football League loan spells with MK Dons, Derby County and Middlesbrough. He joined Crystal Palace last summer, yet was recalled in January after registering no goals and making just six substitute appearances under Alan Pardew.
The England U21 international was subsequently dispatched to Norwich City, where he once again struggled for regular first-team football and failed to find the net in seven outings as Alex Neil's side were relegated straight back to the second tier alongside Newcastle United and hapless Aston Villa.
Burnley are widely thought to be heading for their own immediate return to the Championship this term, but demonstrated fighting spirit by following a drab opening day loss to Swansea City by beating Liverpool 2-0 despite only managing to retain 19.4% possession – the lowest total of any winning side in the Premier League, since Opta began recording the statistic back in 2003-04.
After being unceremoniously dumped out of the EFL Cup in the second round by Accrington Stanley, they slumped to a comprehensive defeat at Chelsea courtesy of goals from a resurgent Eden Hazard, Willian and Victor Moses.
A lack of real ambition in the transfer market has once again been predicted as the likely cause of Burnley's downfall, with only Icelandic midfielder Johann Berg Gudmundsson and goalkeeper Nick Pope arriving from Charlton Athletic before last week's club record £8m signing of Steven Defour from Anderlecht. Key striker Andre Gray is also facing a suspension after being charged with misconduct by The Football Association (FA) over a series of reprehensible tweets sent by the player in 2012 that have resurfaced of late.