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Chairman's Notes: Crystal Palace

19 January 2015

Co-Chairman John Banaszkiewicz links up with fellow Clarets in Dubai

Good afternoon fellow Clarets,

Welcome back to the Turf for another big Premier League game. 

Our recent hectic spell of fixtures has resembled a Championship schedule and I’m sure brought back memories of last season’s promotion run-in for our battle-hardened warriors. 

I feel we are certainly on the right track and maturing into our role as Premier League rookies who have the ability to compete against any team.

What the run of fixtures over Christmas and the New Year shows is that we have the ability to spring a surprise – getting draws against Man City and Newcastle in games that we could have won.

We were also unlucky against Liverpool, but our recent performances show we can more than hold our own at the top level and improve game after game.

The Premier League is different from the Championship in that it is almost three leagues in one: the top-level teams like Chelsea and Man City, the established middle group and the rest; a group we find ourselves in along with today’s opponents, Crystal Palace.

Palace will have been buoyed by their win against Tottenham and will be feeling the boost from Alan Pardew’s arrival but they know the stakes are high for this game. What they will lack this time is the vociferous home support that has been important to their recent victories and we need to press home that advantage. 

I’ve been doing some travelling recently and watched the QPR game with some local Clarets in Dubai. Funny to think of claret and blue in the desert, but it makes me think that the club has to spend more time encouraging our fans around the world to get together and share their experiences with each other and connect with the club. 

As we saw from the tour to Singapore last summer, it can help us gain new fans and encourage interest in the club.

Clarets fans around the world, whether they are in Hong Kong, Dubai or the Galapagos, can keep up with the team via Clarets Player, and can naturally get involved with discussion and debate via fan forums too.

This is also true for football fans for whom Burnley is a second team. People admire the fact that we have done it the hard way, we’re not a rich man’s train set; we are a well-run community club with shared values.

I’m pleased to add my welcome to our latest signing, Michael Keane from Manchester United and I’m sure he will be a great asset. And with the transfer window fully open, rest assured we will be keeping our eyes open to strengthen the squad if Sean feels they can fit with our objectives and team profile. 

But back to today, and if we can get more of our home games to match the atmosphere, volume and passion of our away support this season we can make Turf Moor a fortress.

Up the Clarets!

John B


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