SAM Allardyce has called for his Blackburn Rovers side to ‘keep cool heads’ as he warns against the dangers of a cauldron-like Ewood Park atmosphere tomorrow.

The Rovers boss knows tomorrow’s first top-flight East Lancashire derby for 43 years will be a special experience for all involved but insists his players have a responsibility to deal with the intense pressure.

Allardyce is quick to concede his side are the favourites for the clash, with Burnley still chasing their first Premier League point on their travels, but warns getting carried away by the occasion could prove costly in their search for vital points.

He said: “All the pressure lies with us and we have to deal with that pressure and handle that pressure. The way to do it is to soak up the atmosphere.

“It is a full house, it is going to make the hairs stand up on the back of your neck and it will make you want to go out there and produce your best.

“But not to let that emotion overspill into either making a mistake, not playing to your best or getting involved in something you normally wouldn’t do.

“It is a game of football where the atmosphere will affect you, you have to make sure it affects you the right way. Cool heads, controlled aggression is the order of the day. Using the atmosphere to bring the best out of yourself, from a tactical and technical point of view.”

Allardyce has been involved in several derbies against Rovers for Bolton over the years but, after the last few months, knows tomorrow’s Burnley visit will top all that rivalry.

He insists every player involved will feel ‘an extra edge’ no matter where they hail from but is confident his side will have enough experience to handle the occasion.

“We have seven derbies in the north west but as far as our fans are concerned none they want to win more than this one,” said Allardyce. “We can accept we know what the fans feel, certainly the local lads like Dunny, will be the ones you want to see as a match winner.

“But after all that, whether you are from Blackburn, whether you are from Senegal, or France, or Australia, Norway or Sweden, Outer Mongolia. It does not matter.

“It is what we look forward to, it is what we prepare for every week. When you have the adrenaline rush of waking up and knowing you are selected and then that extra bit of spice of a game like this - look forward to it and deal with it and handle the right way.

“The side I will eventually select, there should not be too much inexperience in terms of not being able to handle it on the field. Hopefully that will be the case when Sunday comes along.”

Last time out, Rovers crashed 6-2 at Arsenal, while Burnley were continuing their winning home run, but Allardyce will be reminding his own players of their own home comforts - having lost just twice at Ewood during his Rovers reign.

He said: “I will revert back to the positives of Aston Villa, not the negatives of Arsenal. I will be talking to the players about how can you beat an Aston Villa side with 10 men and not beat Burnley? How can you allow that to happen?

“We can’t allow that to happen, not as professionals first and foremost. We need the three points and secondly for every Blackburn fan to be able to go home and have the bragging rights for the next week.

“Today you have to be even more controlled than before. The player has to accept responsibility and that is why it is keeping the players focused on what the job is and staying focused on what the job is.

“The outside pressure is there, but don’t let it in. My thoughts will be on the players performing like they did against Aston Villa. I thought that was one of the biggest results I have ever achieved as a manager.”