Burnley complete signing of Brighton’s Dale Stephens

Burnley have announced the signing of Dale Stephens from Brighton on a two-year deal.

The 31-year-old midfielder, joining for an undisclosed fee, is the second signing the Clarets have made since the end of last season, following goalkeeper Will Norris’ arrival from Wolves.

Stephens made 223 appearances for Brighton after moving to the south-coast club from Charlton in 2014. The Bolton-born former Bury and Oldham player has been on Burnley’s radar since an initial interest in 2016.

Stephens said on burnleyfootballclub.com: “I’m very happy. It’s probably taken a few more years than expected but I’m happy to get it over the line this week and finally become a Burnley player.

“I’ve been away from the north-west for a while. It’s nice to come back to where the family resides as well.

“But most importantly I’m coming back to a Premier League football club that’s done well in recent years in this league and I’m excited for that challenge.

“I have played against this squad and this team a lot in recent years, so I know the strengths of the club and that’s what’s excited me, to come in and buy into the gaffer (Sean Dyche)’s ideas and the way he works, which is a good pull for me.

“The club finished 10th last year, which is not easy to do. It won’t be easy to get higher than that in the league, but it’s got to be an aim.

“If you’re not improving, you’re going backwards. I’m sure the club as a whole wants to become better and that’s something I want to be part of.”