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With Everton looking to take Burnley manager Adrian Heath back to Goodison Park as Howard Kendall’s assistant, it was reported that the Burnley directors were to meet to discuss the situation and come up with contingency plans should Heath opt to leave.

Chairman Frank Teasdale was unavailable for comment but director Bob Blakeborough spoke out and said: “We would sincerely hope that Adrian stays with Burnley and continues the good progress he has made over the past fifteen months.”

Frank Teasdale – unavailable for comment

Meanwhile, fans, led by Dave Wynne, membership secretary of the Clarets Independent Supporters’ Association, descended on Turf Moor to plead with the board to keep Heath. Wynne said: “The board of directors must move heaven and earth to keep Adrian Heath at Burnley. He only has a year left on his contract. The board must push the boat out financially and make him a fresh offer of three years to try and persuade him not to go to Everton as Howard Kendall’s assistant.

“It will be nothing short of a disaster for Burnley if the manager is allowed to leave. We are going along the right lines now and making progress under Adrian Heath. He has done a very reasonable job considering the amount of money he has had to spend. A lot of fans think he is only a year off promotion and everybody was anticipating next season with a lot of excitement before they heard the unwelcome news. The board must do everything possible to try and keep him at Burnley. It is clear Adrian Heath has not made his mind up yet.”

A spokesman for Burnley Football Supporters’ Club said: “Nothing is signed and sealed so that gives the Burnley board a last window of opportunity to tempt Adrian Heath into staying at Burnley. But if Adrian Heath leaves then what next for Burnley? There is not even an assistant manager at the club. There is also the deep worry that Adrian Heath, if he decides to go to Everton, will then come back and try and buy our promising players like Andy Cooke and Chris Brass. Losing Adrian Heath will set Burnley back at least a couple of years. The board should do everything within their power to keep Inchy here.”

Everything had been delayed at Everton with Kendall’s flight to Merseyside delayed and Heath admitted: “I’ve had an approach from Howard Kendall but it is premature to presume I will be walking out on Burnley to join Everton. I don’t know what the offer is until I speak to Howard Kendall again. Nothing concrete has been decided yet. I am a bit surprised that people think it is a foregone conclusion. I’m still the manager of Burnley until someone decides otherwise.”

With Merseyside sources claiming his move was inevitable, it was a matter of waiting for the Burnley fans to see whether, just fifteen months after his appointment, we might again be looking for a new manager.

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