ANDRE Gray fired Burnley to a first East Lancashire derby double in 37 years and back to the top of the Championship, and insisted they must now make their most of being top of the table.

Gray’s 16th minute penalty proved to be the difference between the teams, after Blackburn Rovers had two spot kick appeals of their own turned down.


The Clarets responded to being overtaken by Middlesbrough on Friday by restoring their status as league leaders with a ninth win from 12 unbeaten games.

And ahead of tomorrow night’s trip to Fulham, Gray believes promotion remains in their own hands.

“It always has been. It’s down to us. We need to keep winning games and not slip up,” he said.

When you’re in the top two or top of the league it’s down to you.

“As you can see the pressure is on everyone. People are going to make slip-ups but we hope we aren’t one of them.”

Burnley bossed the first half-hour of the derby but Gray admitted he was not surprised that it turned out to be a tight game.

It was never really going to be pretty,” he said.

“Obviously they want to get back in the game whatever way possible and the longer the game went on the uglier it got.

“They were putting us under pressure and putting balls into the box.

“But it happens in derbies, especially Blackburn-Burnley. It’s going to be a feisty game but we dug in and came out with the win.

“It’s a great win, but like I always say it’s the team and coming out with three points, I’m glad I could have scored the penalty and obviously it ended up being the winning goal.”

It was the first penalty Gray had taken since having one saved in the goalless draw at Reading last month.

The striker had what seemed to be the extra pressure of facing up to a sold-out away end, but said: “There’s probably more pressure in the home end if anything because the fans want you to score and you’re facing them.

“There’s no pressure. You have to have tunnel vision in penalties and it’s you against the keeper.

“It’s a bit of mind games as well but you need to make your mind up and stick with it. If he saves it, he saves it.

“That’s how football works sometimes. Obviously that happened against Reading but we’ve moved on.

“It’s a penalty, you miss some, you have some saved. The best in the world miss them.

“It was important to just stay confident and have the determination to get up and take one again and be confident in doing it, and I did that.”