Laws aims to keep Clarets together

10 May 2010 04:11
rian Laws hopes to persuade Burnley's best players to stick with him as he targets an immediate return to the Premier League.

The Clarets' relegation after only one season in the top flight was sealed a fortnight ago but they signed off in some style by coming from two down to beat Champions League-bound Tottenham 4-2 on Sunday.

Unlike Portsmouth and Hull, the other two clubs in the bottom three, Burnley are free of debt and Laws is optimistic they can bounce straight back - provided they can hang on to their assets.

He said: "We want to keep our best players. But football's football, and you know there's going to be outgoings as well as incomings. There's a lot of players who are out of contract and we'll be talking to them over the next few days.

"They've swum the channel to get to the Premier League and we're going to have to do it all over again. We'll do everything possible to get back into the Premier League.

"We've got goals in us, we've got good quality players. When we're creative, we can hurt any team, and it's about keeping the nucleus of that team together.

"We've had a great taste of the Premier League. It's the best league in the world and everybody wants to be part of it."

Laws has remained unpopular with a large section of the Burnley support since replacing Owen Coyle in January and the fans again made their feelings known on Sunday when Tottenham's Gareth Bale netted inside three minutes.

But chairman Barry Kilby has backed Laws and the former Sheffield Wednesday boss remains defiant.

"Supporters generally let you know if you're not winning games and if your performances are not quite up to scratch," he continued. "They were on our back, and particularly mine maybe, because we've gone down and the performance didn't bode well.

"Yet the second half showed the character and that the players are right behind the management and everybody at the football club."

Burnley's second goal was headed in by young midfielder Jack Cork, who opened his Clarets account on his final appearance of a loan spell from Chelsea.

The 20-year-old, who is the son of former Wimbledon striker Alan Cork, said: "It's been a bit of a bad season but it's a great way to end it, especially coming from 2-0 down.

"I was really pleased to get the goal, it topped off a good result for us. My dad was here and it's the same sort of goal he would probably score."

Cork joined Chelsea at the age of nine but has yet to make an appearance for the first team and his spell at Burnley was the latest in a series of loan moves that have also taken him to Bournemouth, Scunthorpe, Southampton, Watford and Coventry.

The midfielder admits his time at Stamford Bridge could be up and he would be open to a permanent transfer to Turf Moor.

He said: "I'll speak to Chelsea and see what their plan is for me over the next year or so, if they think it's best for me to leave or go out on loan or if they want me around the club.

"If Burnley come in this summer, I'll have to really, really think about it. Next year we'll have a really strong team, the financial situation's good and it's a really good club."

It was a disappointing end to the season for Spurs and manager Harry Redknapp after the high of qualifying for Europe's top competition last week.

Top scorer Jermain Defoe was again substituted in the second half and Redknapp admitted he has been disappointed by the form of the World Cup hopeful.

"I wanted more from him than what he was giving," said Redknapp. "His form's not been so good lately so I've taken him off when he's not played well. It's private between me and him how he's playing."

Source: Team_Talk