BURNLEY boss Sean Dyche insisted details of the breakdown in relations with defender Ben Gibson will remain private.

The Clarets confirmed on Wednesday that they had taken the highly-unusual step of allowing Gibson, a £15million signing in August 2018, to train with his former club Middlesbrough.

Ben Gibson

At his press conference ahead of tomorrow’s clash with Saints, Dyche said: “It’s quite a unique situation.

“There’s a private angle to it, which will remain private, but at this time he’s with Middlesbrough, training there to keep fit and stay sharp. He’s still a Burnley player, though.”

Gibson has made only one appearance this season and pushed for a move away from Burnley in January.

The club statement on Wednesday read: “The defender made it clear in the weeks leading up to the end of the January transfer window that he wanted to leave Turf Moor to seek regular first-team football. Unfortunately for the player, the club did not receive an offer it felt was acceptable and he remains contracted to the club.”

On reports claiming there had been a row between the defender and Dyche’s assistant Ian Woan, the boss said: “At this stage the club statement is correct and anything beyond that will remain private to us.”

Dyche insisted he would not close the door on the possibility of Gibson returning but did not sound optimistic that would be the case.

“We’ll see,” he said. "It’s one of those situations where we wait to see what the next step is. For us as a club, and equally for him as a player.”