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1959-60 - Burnley v Leeds United

By 1959/60 Team
January 2 2007

This edition looks at the last game before Christmas against Leeds. Included are Harry Potts' notes following the win at Highbury as seen in the previous edition of this series.

1959/60 Series - Burnley v Leeds United
Saturday 19th December 1959

Referee:         Mr. C. H. Cant (Crewe)
Linesmen:      Mr. H. Richards and Mr.K.Reynolds
Crowd:           17,398
Blacklaw, Angus, Elder, Seith, Miller, Adamson, Connelly, White, Pointer, Robson, Pilkington.
Burgin, Caldwell, Hair, Cush, Charlton, Gibson, Meek, Cameron, McCole, Crowe, Overfield.
Here we are on the Saturday before Christmas and the visitors are Leeds United currently lying in 21st position in the League. With Burnley in 3rd position and playing well, this should be an easy two pointer for the Clarets, but oh dear, oh dear it wasn't to be, Burnley let themselves and the fans down badly and lost the game by 1 goal to nil.

The game was played in atrocious conditions, and was a poor footballing spectacle indeed. The Clarets were by far the better team in the first half, they created nearly all of the chances but just could not get the ball in the net. Jack Charlton was the mainstay of the Leeds defence and dealt most comfortably with the Clarets aerial threat.

The longer the game went on, the more Leeds gained in confidence, It was just not going to be Burnley's day and that was confirmed when United took the lead from a goal scored by Overfield after some neat wingplay by Meek.

After this goal the Burnley forward line rallied but could still not score, Leeds finished the game looking the most likely to add to their score.

At the final whistle it was a very wet, disappointed, and dejected Burnley following that left the stadium.
Programme Review
Teams as printed in the programme apart from White for McIlroy and Cameron in for Revie.

Harry Potts Calling
The main theme of Harry's notes this week was his enthusiastic praise of last weeks win over Arsenal, Harry couldn't contain himself so I have decided to print his exact words here.

"I am sure you would all consider it very remiss on my part if I omitted to make the Number One item in this programme one of congratulation to our players for their wonderful performance, at Highbury, last Saturday.

It has often been my pleasure to call attention to the excellent team-spirit we enjoy at Burnley, and Saturday was one of those occasions when it was set before the eyes of those of us who were at Highbury, in a manner to move our emotional admiration.

Our lads have put up some great shows this season. This was a great show from great hearts. Arsenal may not be commanding the rejoicings that have been their habit, but they are still a side of considerable potential. Make no mistake about that. We anticipated it rightly, and it was just as well that we did, for they set off at a typical Arsenal pace and really meant business. Just when we were feeling very sure that we had taken the measure of their game and mission, and were about to turn the pressure on them, we were severely handicapped by an injury to our brilliant Irish international, Jim McIlroy. Probably had that not happened, we should have gone forward to a degree of command that would have made our victory easier.

But without that very regrettable misfortune we would have missed a glorious display of football courage and determination to pull through, with McIlroy himself lending a measure of support that further emphasised what a force he can be even on one leg, so to speak.

To pull back from two goals down, both of them scored after our mishap-quite a time after it, in fact-and with all the advantages loaded on the side of our opponents, was a truly wonderful achievement, and to each and every member of the side I offer my heartiest congratulations. I shall remember their efforts for a very long time to come.

I can imagine that when you heard the half-time score-Arsenal 2, Burnley 0 - you would be rather downcast, particularly as you did not know that we were playing with only ten fit men, and had to face another 45 minutes under those conditions. But I would like to have seen your faces as the news of the second half began to reach you, and I understand those of you were at Turf Moor were getting news of our scoring, goal by goal. And how well deserved was that second half transformation.

From what I have been able to gather, John Connelly cut a notable niche for himself in the Highbury records by performing the "hat-trick" there. But John relished the feat not because of his own satisfaction, but by reason of the victory it completed for his team mates and himself.

We can all take great pride in the loyalty we get from our players and this afternoon we give them a loyal salute in acknowledgement of their outstanding efforts when discouragement could well have sapped their energies and their aims"

Do you think Harry was a happy man?
After heaping all that praise he just about managed to remember to wish all the patrons a happy Christmas.

Next game: Manchester United v Burnley - Saturday 26th December 1959

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