EXCLUSIVE: Burnley still favourites to sign towering striker despite first offer being rejected

Former England striker Andy Carroll has rejected an initial offer from Burnley, but talks are continuing over a return to the Premier League, TEAMtalk understands.

The 33-year-old is now out-of-contract after his short-term deal with Reading came to an end at the weekend. Carroll returned to action in November, joining Reading following his exit from Newcastle United in the summer.

Carroll performed well for the Royals with two goals and an assist from six starts. We understand that Reading boss Veljko Paunovic is desperate to keep him and they have offered a new deal.

However, Burnley have opened talks to land Carroll – who they believe could help fill the void vacated by Chris Wood – who joined their relegation rivals Newcastle last week.

We now understand that Burnley’s opening offer was shunned by Carroll, who is now training by himself. However, there is an anticipation of another offer and the Clarets remain favourites to land him.

D’Margio Wright-Phillips the latest in a soccer dynasty to rival the Maldinis, Alonsos and Kluiverts

Burnley join race for left-winger

Meanwhile, Burnley have joined Arsenal in the race to sign Tottenham conqueror Mislav Orsic, according to the latest transfer rumours.

Orsic is a left-winger who represents Dinamo Zagreb and the Croatia national team. He came up against Tottenham in the Europa League last season and made a big impression.

Spurs, then managed by Jose Mourinho, were 2-0 up on aggregate after the round of 16 first leg. But that is where Orsic stepped in to ruin their hopes of a trophy.

Mislav Orsic wanted by Arsenal and Burnley

Mislav Orsic is wanted by Arsenal and Burnley this January

The 29-year-old scored a brilliant hat-trick to dump Spurs out of the competition and send Dinamo Zagreb into the quarter-final, where they lost to eventual winners Villarreal.

Orsic has continued his goalscoring exploits against Premier League teams this season, but against West Ham.

He cut inside onto his right foot before sending a great strike in off the woodwork, which gave Dinamo all three points against a youthful Hammers team.

Orsic could enter the Premier League

The Zagreb-born attacker clearly has the ability to make it in a bigger league and could move to England in January.

According to The Sun, Sean Dyche’s Burnley are preparing to rival Arsenal for Orsic.

Arsenal have been admirers of the star ever since his stunning performance against Spurs, but they could now lose out.

Burnley have funds available following Chris Wood’s £25m switch to Newcastle a week ago. And they could spend some of it on Orsic, as a £10m bid is being planned.

The report claims Dyche has put a goal-scoring wide man and a new striker on his wish list. Orsic fits the bill for the former, although Wood’s successor up top is yet to be found.

Dinamo are in no hurry to sell their player, although a transfer would give them funds of their own to improve the squad.

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