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Bird's Eye View: Safe and Secure

1 May 2013

Clarets Player commentator Phil Bird's take on life at Turf Moor and beyond

Safe and Secure:
It was nervy for a while, but Saturday's splendid win at Molineux safeguarded our Championship status.
I thought we were excellent.
Danny Ings' early goal put the pressure on Wolves and, despite the harsh sending off of Michael Duff, we never looked like relinquishing the initiative.
Wins in the Black Country are rare - Burnley haven't done the double over Wolves since the 1956-57 season.



We were amongst the best sides in the country back then.
Wolves won the title in 1958 and 1959 with the Clarets taking the crown in 1960.
That will seem a million miles away for Dean Saunders' side now. 
They look set to be the first side since Swindon Town in the 90's to drop from the Premier League to the third tier in successive seasons.
Their wage bill is estimated at £26m and that alone gives everybody a sense of perspective. In contrast, Peterborough United have every chance of survival on a budget of just £3m!

Thankfully relegation is no longer a possibility, but we still have plenty to play for. 
A win over Ipswich Town would guarantee finishing above local rivals Blackburn Rovers for the first time since the 1979-80 season, when we were relegated from the old Second Division and they were promoted from the Third. 
It must be said we would already be assured of a higher finish but for the offside David Dunn goal at Ewood Park.



Mick McCarthy has done really well at Portman Road.
Since he took over they’ve taken 53 points from 32 games.
Ipswich were rock bottom with just seven points when he took over.
Again, their transformation contrasts directly with the plight of his former club Wolves. 

We’ve had some more good news. It’s great to see Dean Marney has put pen to paper on a new two-year deal.
The former Tottenham Hotspur midfielder has had a fine season. His goal at Leicester back in September was so fierce it broke the net and it would be great if he could celebrate with another against Ipswich on Saturday. 

Double Winner Bale:
Gareth Bale became the third dual winner of the PFA Player of the Year and the Young Player of the Year award in the same season.
He follows Andy Gray and Cristiano Ronaldo. 
Not bad considering he was close to joining Burnley on loan a few seasons ago! 
 
Goal of the Season:
It seemed a little strange that David Dunn’s late offside equaliser at Ewood Park was voted as Blackburn Rovers’ Goal of the Season.
What odds Sam Vokes picks up the honour for his goal at Turf Moor? 
I don’t think so.
Charlie Austin’s sensational strike at The Valley looks a clear winner to me. All will be revealed around 10pm on Sunday at the club’s official Player of the Year night.



Tweet of the Week:
Comes from Gary Lineker, referring to the controversial employment of American comic Reginald D Hunter for the PFA Awards ceremony: “Never been a great fan of the PFA. They’ve never been strong enough in demanding good behaviour from their own. Tough on comedians though.” 

Quote of the Week: 
Dean Saunders, after Burnley’s win at Molineux on Saturday: “If you worked in Boots the chemist and had four different managers, your staff wouldn’t know whether they are coming or going.” 



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