Tag: Burnley

100 Owners: No.95 – Bob Lord (Burnley)

When we talk of the butchers, bakers and candlestick makers that ran our football clubs as their own fiefdoms for most of the twentieth century, there is perhaps one man that, above all others, has come to be considered the personification of the genre: Bob Lord – or, as the football writer Arthur Hopcraft once famously described him, The Khruschev of Burnley. Lord was, perhaps, the aultimate football autocrat. Indeed, the actor Timothy West would use Lord as an inspiration for his portrayal of the hard-nosed Bradley Hardacre in the television series Brass. Lord was the chairman of Burnley Football Club for twenty six years, from 1955 until just three months before his death in 1981. He ruled the club with an iron fist, but also sat on the board of the Football League and was the president of the Alliance Premier League upon its formation in 1979. Lords chairmanship coincided with the most successful period in the clubs history, but he was also involved in controversial player sales, frequent spats with the press and, perhaps most mysteriously of all, with the resignation from the Football League of a fellow football club that also happened to be amongst Burnleys local rivals. Born locally in 1908, Lord started working as a butcher in 1927 at the age of just nineteen and his business eventually grew to fourteen butchers shops. He had been...

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Ralph Coates: 1946-2010 – A Burnley, Tottenham And Orient Legend

It is surprisingly uncommon to find a player whose passing will be marked equally between two different clubs, but the death of Ralph Coates at the age of sixty-four will be marked with sadness at all three of the Football League clubs at which he played: Burnley, Tottenham Hotspur and Leyton Orient. Coates joined Burnley in 1961 as an apprentice, turned professional with them and made his debut for them in 1964. He was, at his first club, slightly unfortunate with his age. The early 1960s were a period of great success for Burnley, but Coates’ emergence into the first team at Turf Moor coincided with a slight dip in their fortunes. Even so, Coates was an uncommonly elegant player on the mud-bath pitches of 1960s England and he made four appearances for his country as well as being in the initial squad for the 1970 World Cup finals, although he didn’t make Alf Ramsey’s final cut. He left the club in 1971 after they Burnley were relegated from the First Division, and Tottenham Hotspur were prepared to pay £190,000 for his services. Coates’ career at Spurs began with a flourish. In 1972, Spurs won the UEFA Cup and the following year Coates was the hero, scoring the winning goal at Wembley against Norwich City. This, however, had been the last hurrah for the great Spurs side of the...

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Where Burnley are Going Right, And Bolton Are Going Wrong

The contrast was stark, like a particularly uncompetitive episode of the BBC’s Bargain Hunt (you can tell I don’t have a proper day job), magnified a million times. Bolton Wanderers’ parent company Burnden Leisure Plc lost £35.4m, partly because they picked up manager Owen Coyle. Burnley Football Club made record profits of £14.4m, despite losing manager Owen Coyle. On-field experiences didn’t contrast so greatly. But the consequence of Burnley’s 18th place to Bolton’s 14th widened the financial gap to the proverbial Grand Canyon. But that’s for future accounts to reflect. For now, Burnley and Bolton seem like football finance good and evil – the difference being £50m at today’s exchange rates. Burnley have been generally lauded for their fiscal responsibility in recent years. And it is generally accepted that, as a result, they will be able to cope with relegation rather better than, say, Hull City, who were relegated with them last spring. Bolton, meanwhile, could be done for if they ever go down, with their heavy reliance on the “benefactor model” of football business and the “blow the broadcast rights money on players’ wages model” of football business – both popular models in the modern game. So, what did Burnley do right? And what did Bolton do wrong? Well, Burnley beat Sheffield United 1-0 in the 2008/2009 Football League Championship play-off final, which qualified them for a Premier...

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Match Of The Week: Burnley 4-3 Preston North End

On the eighth of September 1888, on the opening day of the Football League in England, Preston North End beat Burnley by five goals to two in their first match of ther season. It was the start of the year of The Invincibles, the Preston side that ran away with the Football League championship by eleven points. The margin was all the more remarkable for the twin facts that they only played twenty-two matches in that first, nascent season of league football in England and that, of course, teams only received two points for a win at the time. To put it another way, in their first season as a Football League club, Preston North End only dropped four points. One hundred and twenty-two years on, Preston North End and Burnley resumed hostilities in the Championship in front of BBC television cameras last night. This is something of a secondary derby match for both of these Lancashire clubs. Burnley’s real ire is reserved for Blackburn Rovers, while Preston North End’s traditional rivalry sees them look towards the coast and Blackpool. Both of these rivals, however, are sunning themselves in the Premier League so Burnley and Preston have to make do with with each other for the time being. It’s an unsatisfactory situation and the empty seats at Turf Moor seem to indicate that this particular match hasn’t really caught...

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Owen Coyle Hasn’t Only Let Burnley Football Club Down

Owen Coyle has been receiving plaudits all season. He has refused to break the bank at Burnley and kept his faith in many of the journeymen that got the club into the Premier League. Then, though, he went and blew it, and another little piece of the romance of football died on the inside.

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