Burnley Backers! (Nobody Loves Us?)
Every Clarets fan is gearing up for our big day at Wembley on Spring Bank Holiday Monday 25th May hoping we can beat Sheffield United and achieve promotion to the Premier League and play for the first time in the top flight since 1976.
There is so much at stake with the winners standing to earn £60 million and at least one dream season in the Premier League playing the likes of Manchester United, Liverpool, Chelsea and Arsenal not to mention Blackburn (spit!)
Even if the promoted side is relegated after one season, something which is not uncommon and almost expected, the club will benefit thanks to parachute payments allowing the club to rebuild for a better challenge next time round.
We all of course wish for Nirvana at Wembley but what do the neutrals in the footballing world think of our chances?
Vital Burnley review a few of these and let's hope the positivity from the football experts leads to fruition!
We start with arguably the best manager in the UK if not Europe. He's not God like Owen Coyle but nobody can argue he has not been the most consistent and successful manager in modern times with Manchester United recently winning their third successive Premier League title and next Wednesday night once more finding themselves in the Champions League final when they play Barcelona in Rome.
Sir Alex Ferguson, I have always thought has been good to Burnley over the years under all our recent managers including Stan,Steve and now Owen. He now appears to be supporting us at Wembley and was recenly quoted as saying the following:
'It would be great if Burnley got promoted. They've not been in the top-flight for more than 30 years and it would be another local team for us to play.I've also been impressed by Owen - he has done a great job. '
Thank you Sir Alex and indeed let's hope we will be playing the mighty Red Devils next season!
Next up we have someone who perhaps could not be classed as neutral having played for the Clarets towards the end of his career but nevertheless it's nice to know he still has a soft spot for the club.
Former Match of the Day pundit and England striker Ian Wright speaking in his weekly column in the Sun said recently:
'As for Monday`s Championship play-off final, I really hope my old club Burnley come up. In 2000, I played 15 times in the season they got promotion to the Championship. It`s a great ground(Wembley), the fans are superb and I really hope they beat Sheffield United. No doubt,though, if United do lose, they`ll try and sue Burnley as they play in Claret and Blue.'
Get in! Ian Wright,Wright,Wright is Right!
Another fan of the Clarets appears to be Paul Fletcher. No not that one silly, this one is a sports journalist and has a blog on BBC Sport.
'After the season Burnley have had only a fool would suggest they are not capable of ending with victory at Wembley' he concludes after saying a number of complimentary things about the club and manager in his recent blogs. A selection we provide below:
'It did not take me long to realise why Burnley manager Owen Coyle has been able to squeeze so much out of his players this season.I texted him last week to arrange a time for our interview. Shortly afterwards the reply arrived. Not only did he call me 'm8' but he dropped in smiley faces at the end of his sentences. It was unlike any other text I had ever received from a professional sportsperson. Smiley faces are what my nephew uses, or perhaps my wife after a satisfying day out shopping. I showed it to a couple of people in the office and, without realising it, I guess I had already started to become infected by Coyle's unbelievable enthusiasm. I hadn't even spoken to him yet'
'Without doubt there is something special about this 42-year-old Scotsman who arrived at Turf Moor from St Johnstone in November 2007.'
'I couldn't help but think that somehow the act of pulling his (Coyle) sweatshirt down at the sides was significant, it hinted at a pride in his appearance and a respect for his fellow professionals; a man who wants things to be done right' (After Reading match)
Mirror journalist, Brian Reade is another supporting the Clarets:
'There can be few people outside of Blackburn who aren't delighted that Burnley have made it to the Wembley play-offs. They're a club with great history, who've produced fine talent for decades and who have always tried to play the right way. Short passing on the deck and at pace.And if they do defeat Sheffield United in the final they will fully deserve promotion because their exertions this season have been epic.I hope they make it into the Premier League, because a club with such a proud history does not deserve to be kept so long in the footballing wilderness.'
Yes,it has been a remarkable season for the Clarets and we have made numerous friends in the footballing world. So many fans from other football clubs are wishing us well, you only have to scour the football forums and message boards. Our cup runs and our attacking style of play have endeared us to a number of neutrals both experts,pundits and fans alike. So much so we might have to start revising one of our chants 'Nobody Loves Us We Dont Care' We wont at least have to change the bit that goes 'We are Burnley,Super Burnley from the North' especially if its the Clarets celebrating at Wembley next Monday.