It’s Mullen’s job after two wins
Fifteen days after becoming caretaker manager, and with wins against Carlisle United and Wrexham, Jimmy Mullen was appointed as the full time Burnley manager just one day ahead of what had been looking likely to be his third game in caretaker charge.
Mullen had not been the fans’ choice, far from it, but there had been a warming towards him following the 6-2 win at Wrexham six days earlier when teenager Graham Lancashire hit a hat trick and from the minute the fans left the Racecourse Ground the decision looked almost inevitable. The only surprise was that it took the board of directors another six days before confirming it.
Speaking as the new Burnley manager, Mullen said he was fully aware just how big a task faced him and he said: “I know the directors’ ambitions and I know what the fans expect. This club has magnificent support and I am still very much aware that I need to get Burnley out of the Fourth Division. But I know all the players, and I know the system I want to play. I know that some of the players are capable of things they have not yet been asked to do.”
Mullen confirmed that he didn’t hesitate in accepting when the call came from chairman Frank Teasdale. “From a point of view of job satisfaction, I thought that I had done enough in the last two games to prove that I could do the job. I have been here 14 months and I know exactly what needs doing,” he added.
He was already preparing for the next game at home to Walsall, his first as full time manager, the following day and there was good news regarding the team. Ian Measham was much improved and could come back into contention and so could Mike Conroy who had come through half an hour in a reserve game during the week at Huddersfield. John Francis had played in that reserve game following the completion of his three match ban and he was back in the squad with Mullen deliberating on whether he should come straight back in despite the form of Roger Eli and Lancashire.
He was giving no clues but did say: “I watched Walsall at Crewe last Friday and they looked like a side who like to play a lot of football. That means they are pretty similar to us and should make it an attractive game.”
It was time for a new era at Burnley Football Club. There were a lot of concerns from the fans but Mullen was now in charge of the team and deserved the support that had been so lacking for Frank Casper in previous weeks.Follow UpTheClarets:
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