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Pope makes Premier League debut

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TOP FLIGHT DEBUT: Nick Pope in action for Bury Town
TOP FLIGHT DEBUT: Nick Pope in action for Bury Town

Burnley goalkeeper Nick Pope came off the bench to make his Premier League debut this afternoon.

The 25-year-old, who hails from Wicken, joined the Clarets last summer from Charlton Athletic and he went on to make four cup appearances in 2016/17.

However, the former Bury Town shot-stopper has now had his first taste of top-flight action after England international Tom Heaton was forced off with a shoulder injury during the first half of Burnley’s home clash against Crystal Palace.

And the ex-West Suffolk College pupil certainly did not look overawed by the occasion as he went on to keep a clean sheet in the 1-0 victory at Turf Moor.

Pope made two saves of note — one with his left boot to frustrate Christian Benteke from close range and the other saw him punch clear Yohan Cabaye’s dipping shot.

After the final whistle, Burnley manager Sean Dyche revealed that Heaton has potentially suffered a dislocated shoulder, which could see Pope retain the gloves for the foreseeable future.

Next up for the Lancashire side is a trip to Anfield to take on Liverpool on Saturday (3pm).

Pope — younger brother of Soham Town Rangers goalkeeper Josh — had a number of loan spells during his time with Charlton, keeping goal for the likes of Cambridge United, York City and Bury, the latter of whom he helped to earn League Two promotion in 2015.