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Gray Relishing A New Challenge

21 August 2015

Andre Gray insisted the weight of being Burnley’s record signing does not weigh heavy on his shoulders.

The Brentford striker signed a three-year deal with the Clarets late on Friday for an undisclosed fee that, subject to paperwork, smashes the previous record purchase at the club.

And Gray, who will wear number seven at Turf Moor, admitted Sean Dyche’s development of young strikers was a huge factor in his decision to join the club.

He told Clarets Player: “It was quite an easy decision in the end. As soon as Burnley’s name came up I definitely wanted to speak to them and find out what they had to say.

“It was quite straight forward after that. I spoke to my agent and (former Brentford manager) Mark Warburton and his assistant too.

“They have a good relationship with the gaffer, so I got another honest opinion from someone I trust and they sang the praises of Burnley Football Club and especially the manager.

“The gaffer was a massive influence. If you look at it, Danny Ings has gone on and Charlie Austin has been involved with England.

“Then there’s Jay Rodriguez, so the list goes on really and that’s something I want to be a part of.

“Obviously he was at Watford as well with Troy Deeney and you’ve seen his rise. He’s got this club promoted to the Premier League too, so his record speaks for itself and it was a no-brainer really.”

The move caps a stunning rise through the ranks for a striker who spent just one year at Brentford and was playing non-league football at Luton Town as recently as 2014, following spells with Telford and Hinckley.

He added: “It’s been a whirlwind for me, but I’ve worked hard for it. I’ve had a little luck along the way, but I think I’ve earned that by the work I’ve put in.

“Last season was a test for me. I didn’t sign at Brentford to be the main striker, but with injuries, etc, I ended up being thrown in at the deep end.

“But I think that’s got me to where I am now and at this football club.

“That was my learning curve and progression in this league.”

Gray becomes the fourth established striker signed by the Clarets this season - following Jelle Vossen, Chris Long and Rouwen Hennings - to add to existing frontmen at the club.

But the former England C international is unfazed by the fact he will have to earn his shirt in a dressing room full of rivals.

He said: “There is competition here, as at any club. I’ve come into a massive changing room, but it’s down to me.

“The price tag doesn’t bother me. One thing I know is that I’ll work hard for this club and give it all I’ve got.

“Hopefully the goals go along with that.”

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