BURNS TO STAY AT SARPSBORG
Prior to the transfer window closing last week, Delaware native Colin Burns reveals he was seriously considering a loan deal away from Norwegian 1. Division Sarpsborg, but will for now remain in Norway.
"I was scheduled to go on loan before the close of the Norwegian transfer window [on] August 31st," Burns told YA. "Myself and the club were initiating the loan due to anticipated work permit problems in January 2011."
The 6'4" goalkeeper signed with Sarpsborg at the beginning of the 2010 season and was set to start between the pipes until an issue with the language barrier arose at preseason camp.
Because of this, Burns hasn't seen as much field time as expected.
"The Norwegian immigration department has a vague rule that states; 'generally' you should play in at least 50% of the first team matches. Right now my total is at five games so I'm not even close," he explained. "Based on this rule, we were eagerly searching for a loan move so that I would be eligible to play in the second year on my contract."
Burns is no stranger to the intricacies of foreign contracts, as he ran into transfer problems when first arriving in Sweden with Ljungskile in 2008.
"I'm quite used to fighting government and [soccer] federation bureaucracies in my career so this is nothing new for me," Burns stated matter-of-factly.
With two years of play at Ljungskile and another with Finnish clubs Kokkolan and Sepsi-78 under his belt, the search for a loan deal took place in familiar territory.
"We had lined up a loan move with a [Norwegian Eliteserien] team and had a few teams in Scandinavia as backup plans but Sarpsborg needed to find another keeper to replace me while I was away," said Burns.
New developments with contract specifics arose just one day prior to the close of the transfer window and led Burns and Sarpsborg to believe the 28 year old keeper would still be eligible to play in the 2011 season.
"With the new information, we all decided that I would stay and that I will most likely be granted a work permit next season," concluded Burns. "In the event that I do not, Sarpsborg has to find a loan move beginning January 2011 as I am still under contract even if I do not have a work permit to play for Sarpsborg."
Sarpsborg currently sits at fourth in the 1. Division with nine games remaining this season. A move up to third would mean a play-off with the 14th place Eliteserien team for a chance at promotion.
Sunday Burns and company face third placed Ranheim at DnB Nor Arena.