Hearts sign Burnley defender Jimmy Dunne on loan

Jimmy Dunne at Tynecastle Park after joining Hearts on loan from Burnley. Pic: Heart of Midlothian FC
Jimmy Dunne at Tynecastle Park after joining Hearts on loan from Burnley. Pic: Heart of Midlothian FC
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Hearts have signed Burnley centre-back Jimmy Dunne on loan to cover for injuries in defence.


The 20-year-old Irishman could make his debut against Kilmarnock this weekend with Christophe Berra out and Aaron Hughes struggling with injury.

Dunne signed an initial loan deal until January 7 which could be extended if all parties agree. Before making the move to Edinburgh, he negotiated a new contract tying him to Burnley until 2020.

Speaking to Hearts TV, the Republic of Ireland Under-21 internationalist said he is a centre-back who will bring a traditional approach to the game. He has already been briefed by Hearts manager Craig Levein and assistant coach Austin MacPhee on what to expect in Scotland.

"I’m a defender that likes to defend first. My training at Burnley over the last years has always been to defend first and to play after that is a big bonus.

"I’ve spoken to the gaffer and Austin about how they want me to play, and things we need to improve on during the season. I hope that, with their help, I can fill into a spot and improve things that I haven’t been good at and also step on with things that I’ve been doing well.

"I did ask a lot of people about it but to be honest, once I heard ‘Hearts’ I kind of went with my gut. I kind of knew this was going to be a good opportunity for me. It’s a massive club, playing in a big league. If I do well here then it’s a great chance for me.

"I know it’s a very competitive league and this season’s its been getting a lot of attention because of the players and managers that are coming in. I know that Hearts have been off to a great start and they’re going to look to continue that run, so I just want to be a part of that.

"It feels amazing to be here. I think I underestimated how big of a club Hearts actually is. I’ve had a very welcoming start, I’ve learned a little bit about the history of the club already and got to meet everybody so it’s been good so far."

Berra, the Hearts captain, will miss six months with a torn hamstring, while Hughes is suffering from a calf problem. Dunne's arrival offers vital cover in an area where Hearts had been left short.

Dunne told the Burnley website that he is delighted to have his future sorted in England and with the opportunity he now has in the Ladbrokes Premiership.

"The new contract gives me not only security, but a chance to be part of a club that is really progressing and has been on the up for the past few seasons," he said. "“For me to remain part of that is a massive thing for me and my development.

"I will still be in contact with the coaches at Burnley and this time next year hopefully they will see me in a higher position than this summer. Hearts have been unfortunate with injuries, particularly at the back, and I feel lucky to have been able to get this deal to hopefully help plug the gap and play in some huge games.

“I know that Hearts have been off to a great start and they’re going to look to continue that run, so I just want to be a part of that. It’s a club with an amazing fanbase and seems similar in philosophy to Burnley, which should help me fit in really well."