Sean Dyche expects young defender Jimmy Dunne to grow again from his loan spell at Sunderland.
The Irish defender had several options available for the next stage of his development after his impressive loan at Hearts, during the first half of the Scottish Premiership season, was cut short through injury.
And after the Black Cats won the race for Dunne’s services until the summer, Dyche is confident the 21-year-old will grab the next opportunity with both hands.
He said: “Jimmy has done very well for Accrington Stanley and at Hearts and he continues to mature as a player.
“The Hearts loan was only cut short through injury, but a lot of options became available and we always chat to players about their options.
“There are a lot of influences on a player these days, and the way I look at it is that if they want to be at a particular club, with that challenge, that’s a good start.
“There are no comebacks on me or the club, for one.
“We advise on the clubs available and they take in the challenge and we support it. Jimmy decided the next one is Sunderland and we want him to do well.”
Dyche, who also approved loan deals for Ali Koiki to Swindon Town and Ntumba Massanka to Belgian side RWD Molenbeek, added: “When they go out on loan we don’t mollycoddle them and ring them every day.
“We have scouts who watch them and get regular feedback, but we don’t necessarily touch base with them because they are maturing as players and learning.
“You can’t just hold their hand all the time.
“I believe in self-learning because making sense of new surroundings and new challenges is part of your growing as a professional.
“It’s for players to go and take on the new challenge and Jimmy will do that because he wants it.”
Pictures courtesy of Sunderland FC