Dundee chief John Nelms says manager Tony Docherty is under no obligation to play loan stars from partner club Burnley.
The Dark Blues have taken three players – Dara Costelloe, Owen Dodgson and Michael Mellon – on loan from the Premier League outfit since confirming the clubs’ new “strategic alliance”.
Player development is one of the areas in which Dundee and Burnley are set to work together closely.
But in an interview with Sky Sports, the Dark Blues’ managing director insisted the final say on whether to play Clarets loan stars rests with manager Tony Docherty.
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We've been hearing about their strategic partnership and what it could mean for both clubs 🔽 pic.twitter.com/W0hIdl78XA
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“The coach has full freedom,” Nelms said.
“But the idea is we’re bringing in players that [Tony Docherty] will want to play. That’s really the main thing.
“Dundee – we’ve always had young players. We’ve got three Scottish under-21s. We like to develop players – that’s in our DNA.
“So the players that we bring up, they are most likely at a higher level already than most of the players we have.
“Yes, they have issues they have to work out. But that’s our role – to help work those issues out.
“But there’s no obligation. There’s nothing we absolutely have to do. It’s more of a ‘wants and needs’ thing that we will do.”
Burnley chairman Alan Pace also spoke to Sky Sports on the topic of his company ALK Capital, which owns the Clarets, potentially taking a future stake in Dundee.
The Scottish FA’s approval of Bournemouth owner Bill Foley’s investment in Hibs appears to have cleared the way, in principle, for multi-club operations to move in on Scottish clubs.
The possibility of Dundee becoming such an outfit is one Pace has not ruled out.
“I’m very interested in what is possible,” said the Burnley chief.
“One of the things that I will always be about is: what is the art of possibility?
“I’ll be curious to see where it goes. But we have no pre-conceived design or intention at this moment.”