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Gilks In A Spin At Clarets Move

PUBLISHED

17:06 2nd July 2014

Matt Gilks insists he has signed for Burnley to put pressure on Tom Heaton for the number one spot.

Former Blackpool stopper Gilks joins Heaton and Alex Cisak in the goalkeeping pool at Turf Moor after agreeing a two-year deal with the Clarets.

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The 32-year-old Scotland international insisted the time was right to sever ties with the Seasiders after six years in which he helped the Tangerines achieve promotion to the Premier League.

And Gilks insisted he was ready to meet the Clarets’ own top flight challenge head-on as the players prepare to return to pre-season training.

He said: “I know there’s a strong goalkeeping pool here and Tom (Heaton) was absolutely fantastic last season. 

“I’m surprised he didn’t make the divisional team, but he’s been a massive reason why Burnley are in the Premier League, so I know it’s going to be tough.

“But I think in the Premier League you need competition for places and if I can keep the lads here on their toes and between us we help keep the club in this division, then that’s what it’s all about.”

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Gilks, who became the Clarets’ second summer signing following the capture of Michael Kightly, added: “The move here is something that was mentioned at the end of last season.

“I was out of contract at Blackpool and they did offer me a new one via text message, which was strange.

“I think I wanted to move on anyway, I’ve been there for six years and had three brilliant years there under Ian Holloway.

“What we achieved was fantastic, but I realised I was due for a change and probably the club did too. 

“I spoke to several other clubs but recently I got a phone call asking about my availability and things quickly escalated from there.”

Gilks, who was Blackpool’s first choice goalkeeper during their solitary Premier League season in 2010/11, until he sustained a knee injury in late November, added: “Burnley and Blackpool have followed similar paths in recent years and I went through what Burnley did there. 

“Unfortunately, neither club could stay there more than one year in what is a very tough league.

“But hopefully Burnley can stay there this time. I know the club well, having played here and at the training ground a lot as a kid at Rochdale. 

“I’m familiar with the place and I don’t live too far away, so the locality is great for me.

“I’ve excited to get going now. I’ve looked at the fixture list and when you have Chelsea and Manchester United at home in your first three games you know you have to be right on it from day one!

“But I know I’ve had a good off-season and I’m sure the lads here have all enjoyed a good break and will be ready to go and looking forward to it.”

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