Welcome aboard - there’s all to play for

FOOTBALL fans will always welcome on board a goalscorer – and on-loan Aston Villa 20-year-old Nathan Delfouneso has given Burnley just the lift they need.

Despite a run of good form, the Clarets were facing a striker crisis by the end of last week.

With long-term absentee Martin Paterson being joined on the injured list by Charlie Austin and Steve Thompson, to say things were really stretched would be putting it mildly with a highly competitive Championship play-off and promotion run-in to face.

Burnley were left with Jay Rodriguez, still a relative youngster, and the experienced Chris Iwelumo – but it’s doubtful big Chris can last a full 90, especially with the fixtures piled up.

As it is, and make no bones about it there is some hard work ahead, the Clarets are more than in with a shout of the play-offs, and even the coveted second place is not out of reach.

Results have been reasonably kind to Burnley over the last couple of rounds of fixtures.

In the last two games, a goal has been good enough to see off Crystal Palace at home, when Rodriguez was on the scoresheet, and on Tuesday night Delfouneso ensured the warmest of welcomes from the Burnley faithful by netting the winner at Hull.

Of the teams who currently make up the top three, assuming QPR to be out of reach they still have to play Swansea, which could take care of them.

Don’t get me wrong, there are an awful lot of difficult games ahead, and as other recent form sides are discovering, in a division as tight as this there is a lot that can quickly go wrong.

But there’s no doubt Burnley fans have been given a fillip, because in the dying days of Brian Laws’s era the season was in danger of becoming a write-off.

Now there is very much all to play for.