June 25, 2024

Burnley have only 14 Premier League points this season, but Sander Berge feels the club is still moving ahead under Vincent Kompany.
Despite Burnley’s disastrous season, Sander Berge feels he has improved the most this season under Vincent Kompany.

Burnley is all about the big picture, and the Clarets will continue with Kompany even if they are relegated, as appears likely, because they believe he is improving them.

Chairman Alan Pace and his board set out on a three-year plan when they signed Kompany to lead the Clarets to Premier League status in 2025, and the Clarets manager can still achieve that aim if they are relegated and he wins promotion. Berge bought into this long-term ambition when he signed from Sheffield United for £15 million on the eve of the season, and he believes Kompany is improving their young, inexperienced group.

Berge, 26, is one of Burnley’s senior statesmen, having played in the Champions League with Genk and the Premier League with the Blades, and he believes Kompany is getting the most out of him.

“That was probably one of the main reasons why I came here, because I really believe in the project,” the Norwegian midfielder added. “I believe in bringing young players together, developing them, taking the next stages, and being a part of a process in which the outcome is not determined in the short term, win or lose.

“Despite having 14 points, this is a project that will improve day by day. It appears to be a battle, and it certainly has been at times. I understand that people on the outside have been skeptical, but I can state for myself and everyone in that locker room that I have never developed as much as I have this year compared to all of the prior years I’ve played football.

 

Sander Berge - Player profile 23/24 | Transfermarkt

 

“There’s no doubt about that.”

Burnley has taken one step back in the aim of taking two steps forward, with a net spend of a remarkable £92 million last summer, just £1 million less than quadruple-chasing Liverpool.

They meet Brentford at Turf Moor on Saturday, and their home record is the Premier League’s lowest, with only five points. Berge argues that their young squad, drawn from around Europe, is learning under Kompany in the punishing Premier League.

“The Premier League is brutal so the fine margins can make everything look way worse than it probably is,” he went on to say. “Kompany has been in and around the game, has learned from the greatest, and is able to see the big picture.

“We may lose 3-0, but he can delve into it and discover minor, determining aspects, and we haven’t been far off.

“It may not appear like you’ve progressed in one or three months on the pitch at three o’clock on a Saturday, but you’ve developed significantly from Monday to Friday in terms of game understanding and self-care.

“I believe in the project, even though his goal, and our goal, is to go out, get better and win.”

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