Clarets chairman Barry Kilby is under increasing pressure from fans to dismiss manager Brian Laws following Burnley’s relegation to the Championship.

Two Lancashire Telegraph writers give their differing views on the subject.


SHOULD he go or should he stay? Burnley fans seem to have been pondering this question from the very beginning of Brian Laws’ reign as manager.

Okay, he received a warm welcome for his first game, a baptism of fire against Manchester United at the Theatre of Dreams, but his approval rating went downhill very quickly from then on.

Losing the next game to Reading, who were at the wrong end of the Championship, in the FA Cup, followed by 11 more defeats in the following 12 soon had the Clarets’ faithful openly questioning the board’s choice that he was the man to lead the club to survival.

His rotten record at Sheffield Wednesday had been instantly mirrored at Turf Moor and the murmurings on the terraces grew to full blown antagonism.

His tactics, his team selections, his television interviews and his demeanour on the touchline were scrutinised by thousands of pairs of eyes and found wanting.

Why, we asked on the terraces, did he not play Andre Bikey in central defence?

Were Leon Cort and Danny Fox any better than the players we already had and why bring in goalkeeper Nicky Weaver and never play him?

And so it has remained. Over the last few weeks, the fans have not once chanted his name despite remaining defiant in the face of relegation and determined to enjoy our all-too-brief season in the best league in the world.

We’ve shouted ‘Alexander’s claret and blue army’ and in similar vein for Robbie Blake, but the only sound of Brian being uttered has been followed with ‘out’ after it!

It’s for this reason that I think Brian should go. He will never be able to win the fans over, no matter what he does in the coming weeks or months.

Those who know Brian describe him as a very nice bloke, but sometimes that is just not enough.

By Gill Johnson.


BRIAN Laws never stood a chance of keeping the Clarets in the Premier League but he IS the man to lead the charge back to the elite of English football.

The treatment of the former player was most un-Burnley-like.

So-called fans were against him even before he was appointed.

You get the feeling that some of them were willing him to fail. That is a disgrace from supporters.

He took on a team already sinking towards the Championship long before Owen Coyle decided to send the Clarets into an unsurvivable spiral towards the drop when he Trotted off in January.

Laws cannot be blamed for relegation. He also can’t be blamed for a defence that wasn’t capable of doing what the description suggests it should.

The problems were all down to Coyle. He is the man the anger should still be aimed at. He brought good times but is responsible for the bad days.

Burnley is a rare club. It is rare because what happens on the Turf Moor pitch affects directly the spirit and feeling of the town like no other.

For that reason alone, Burnley’s boss has to know and feel the club.

The manager has to know what the game means to the people of Burnley. Brian Laws does. Brian Laws ‘gets it’.

And to those stat hunters who ask what he achieved at Sheffield Wednesday. Well, all those stats prove is that stats can lie.

That is a car crash of a football club, has been ever since relegation from the Premier League a decade ago and bigger and so-called more respected names than Laws have failed there.

Give a proper Burnley man a proper chance. Laws will be hurting more than most after relegation.

Get behind him, support his team in the Championship.

If you want to boo your manager go support someone else. It ain’t the Burnley way.

By Matt Donlan.

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