Burnley clinched a second First Division title in 1959–60. They had not topped the table until the last match was played out. The squad cost only £13,000 (equivalent to £300,000 in 2020) in transfer fees—£8,000 on McIlroy in 1950 and £5,000 on left-back Alex Elder in 1959. The other players came from their youth academy. With 80,000 inhabitants, the town of Burnley became the smallest to have an English first tier champion. They travelled to the United States after the season ended to participate in the International Soccer League, the first modern international American football tournament.


1. John Angus (right-back):  He played in a total of 439 league games for Burnley and with cup games totalled 521 appearances. His four goals all came between 1964 and 1966.

2. Adam Blacklaw (Goalkeeper): Blacklaw joined the Burnley ground staff as a schoolboy apprentice in 1954, directly from Frederick Street School in Aberdeen, earning a professional contract in October of that year. He made his first-team debut on 22 December 1956 and spent over ten seasons with the Clarets. He took over as regular goalkeeper when Colin McDonald suffered a broken leg in March 1959. During his time at Burnley, Blacklaw earned a League championship medal in season 1959–60 and an FA Cup runners-up medal in 1962. He played regularly for Burnley until 1965.

3. Alex Elder (Left back):  Elder played in Burnley's European Cup campaign the following season and then in the FA Cup Final Wembley side of 1962. He forged a formidable full back partnership with John Angus and the two were only separated when Elder broke an ankle in pre-season training in 1963. In July 1965, Elder succeeded Brian Miller as club captain. Elder was just 26 when in August 1967 Burnley accepted £50,000 from Stoke City after making 330 appearances for the "Clarets" scoring 17 goals. While he was reluctant to leave, he admitted that his face did not fit in with the new coach, former teammate Jimmy Adamson.

4. Jimmy Adamson (Right-half): He joined Burnley in January 1947 after playing non-league football in his native Ashington and working as a miner. He was an ever-present as Burnley won the First Division in 1959–60 and captained the side to the 1962 FA Cup Final which they lost against Tottenham Hotspur. He was also named Footballer of the Year in 1962. Adamson formed a midfield partnership with inside-forward Jimmy McIlroy, around which much of Burnley's creative play was centred.

5. Tommy Cummings (Centre defender): Cummings made his league debut for Burnley in December 1948. He also played for England B three times. He played in the 1959–60 championship winning season and in the 1962 FA Cup Final, and in all made 479 appearances for the Clarets, standing fifth in their all-time list of Football League appearances with 434. He played his last game for the club nearly 14 years after making his debut.

6. Brain Miller (Wing half): Born in Hapton, Lancashire, Miller played only for Burnley during his career. He won his only international cap on 27 May 1961 in a 3–1 defeat to Austria.He managed the Clarets between 1979 and 1983 and between 1986 and 1989. He helped them win the Third Division title during his first spell. He played a total of 379 matches.

7. John Connely (Ouside forward): For a winger, he was always a prolific goal scorer, scoring 105 goals for Burnley in 265 appearances. In the 1959–60 season, Connelly played a crucial part in helping Burnley to end as league champions for only the second time. He scored 20 goals in 34 league appearances. Unfortunately for him, he missed the vital last game against Manchester City that gave Burnley the title. His replacement, Trevor Meredith, scored the final winning goal while Connelly was in hospital having a cartilage operation. However, he still received a Championship winner's medal.

In the following three seasons, Connelly played a full part and scored plenty of goals to help Burnley finish fourth, second and third, respectively, in the league. In addition to finishing second in the 1961–62 season, Burnley reached the FA Cup final where they were beaten 3–1 by Tottenham Hotspur. Connelly played on the right wing and received a runners-up medal. In the 1963–64 season, the emergence of a talented young Scottish winger, Willie Morgan, meant that Connelly was forced to play on the left wing. In April 1964 he was transferred to Manchester United for £56,000.

8. James Mcclroy (Forward/ Attacking midfielder): He joined Burnley in March 1950 for £7,000. He soon cemented his reputation as one of the finest scheming inside forwards since World War II. He was dubbed as the 'Brain' of Burnley and was a very composed passer of the ball only releasing it when he was sure of finding a teammate. His neat footwork made him a crowd favourite at Turf Moor and indeed for the Northern Ireland national team where he made 55 caps.He helped Burnley win the First Division in 1959–60 and reach the FA Cup Final in 1962, losing 3–1 to Tottenham Hotspur. After 497 matches for the "Clarets" scoring 131 goals, McIlory was allowed to leave for Stoke City for a cut price £25,000, which came as a shock to the Burnley fans who branded chairman Bob Lord 'insane'.

9. Ray Pointer ( Striker):  He won 3 England caps overall whilst at Burnley, scoring 2 goals for his country. He won his first cap on 28 September 1961 in a 4–1 win against Luxembourg. He scored in that match. His other England goal was against Portugal. He scored 118 goals in 223 appearances for the clarets.

10. Jimmy Robson (Inside forward): He played over 450 matches in the Football League. Robson managed to score 79 goals in 202 games with Burnley. In the 1962 FA Cup Final, Robson's goal against Tottenham to make it 1-1 was the 100th goal ever scored in an FA Cup final at Wembley. Burnley lost 3–1. Robson did score another goal but it was ruled off-side.

11. Brian Pilkington (Winger):  Following the departure of Billy Elliott to Sunderland in the summer of 1953, Pilkington became a regular in the first team. In February 1954, he was called in to the Royal Air Force and was stationed at RAF Kirkham, but continued to play for Burnley during this period. During his career, Pilkington played 340 games for Burnley scoring 77 goals. During Burnley's momentous 1959/1960 season he missed only one game and contributed 11 goals, including the opening goal at Manchester City in the 2–1 win that crowned Burnley as champions.

12. Bobby Seith (Right half): Seith began his professional career with Burnley, whom he joined in 1948 aged 16. He made his debut for the Clarets in 1953, in a 2–1 away victory against Manchester United, and soon became their regular right half. In the1959–60 season Seith played 27 games in that league campaign as they moved towards their first championship since 1920–21. However a defensive blip in a game against challengers Wolves saw him dropped in March 1960 and he was still absent from the side when they eventually clinched the title.That summer, a dispute with the Burnley chairman led to Seith's transfer back to Scotland, where he joined Dundee for £7,500.

Vintage Clarets

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