CHEERED Clarets boss Owen Coyle has paid tribute to the spirit of Clarke Carlisle after the defender came in from the cold on Tuesday nght.

Carlisle led by example in the 1-0 derby win at Blackpool despite not having featured for the first team since the 3-0 thumping at Watford back in January.

But, as Coyle wielded the axe and made big changes following the heavy loss to Sheffield Wednesday, 29-year-old Carlisle got his chance at the heart of defence and seized it with both hands.

“Clarke was outsta-nding,” said Coyle.

“He has had to be patient and wait for his chance to get back into the team and that is always difficult for players.

“But he came back so well and showed everyone the level of performances they are capable of.

“And that is great for the supporters, who were magnificent.

“They travelled on an awful night and stood on the far side with no cover and gave us a tremendous level of support.

"I was delighted to reward them with the win.”