Burnley ‘Head' to victory in Switzerland

Last updated : 19 October 2006 By Tony Scholes
Things were quiet in Burnley at the time although local barber Harold Woodhouse had caused something of a stir by charging customers just 2/- (10p) for a neck trim rather than the usual full haircut price of 4/-. It was against regulations and poor Harold was thrown out of the Hairdresser's Federation for his crime.

There was something of a treat for the Burnley players when Harry Potts took them all out to the Empire Cinema on St James Street, where they watched the first showing in Burnley of ‘Goal' the film of the 1966 World Cup.

The two captains Alex Elder and Arme Groberty before kick off

Having got over that excitement they flew out to Geneva on a real high but that had more to do with a brilliant 5-2 victory over Leicester on the previous Saturday. It was a performance that had everyone sitting up and taking notice as Gordon Harris, Andy Lochhead, Willie Irvine, Ralph Coates and Alex Elder all found the net.

Leicester goalkeeper, England's number one Gordon Banks, had a blinder and needed to have done just to keep the score down. Former England star Tom Finney wrote in the News of the World: “Pity poor Leicester!. When you meet brilliant Burnley in this mood not even a super show by England's World Cup keeper can stop the flow.

“With the Burnley attack firing on all five cylinders I doubt if any side in the country could have lived with them. Man of the Match was Ralph Coates, Burnley's exclusive pimpernel of an outside left, he could certainly solve a problem for Alf Ramsey.”

Praise indeed from a former great, and we boarded our flight after being installed as one of the favourites to win the competition. It was a fully fit squad too that travelled, just fourteen players made the journey, along with manager Harry Potts, his staff and some directors. One person missing was Chairman Bob Lord who instead of going to the game was holidaying in Bournemouth.

The fans were not in Lord's good books at the time. He'd banned flags inside Turf Moor, saying: “It is not just a matter of these flags blocking people's view, but we have had reports of these things being used, not as club favours, but as weapons. We have a real problem with the hooligan element and the team think this is the right thing to do.”

So it was the team then, and he also persuaded club captain Alex Elder to speak out about the decision to cordon off the terracing directly behind both goals, this to prevent supporters from throwing missiles at opposing goalkeepers.

Some supporters did make the journey out to Switzerland and they included 18 year old youth Malcolm Moss who spent 22 hours travelling overland. So pleased were the club at his dedication that manager Harry Potts treated him to a meal. “I don't miss many games and I didn't intend missing this one,” Malcolm said.

Four very regular supporters though had problems that almost forced them to miss the game. Roy Kilby (now there's a familiar name), Brian Wren, Ian Lewis and Len Beattie chose to fly on the day. They got from Manchester to London with no problems but their flight from London to Geneva was delayed because of an electrical fault. They reached the Stade Olympique de la Pontaise with less than an hour to spare.

Coach Jimmy Adamson had been on a scouting mission and returned suggesting that their best players were former international goalkeeper Rene Schneider, lanky link man Richard Durr and strikers Robert Hosp and Pieter Kerkhoffs.

The two strikers were thought to be a real threat, Hosp was first choice for Switzerland whilst Kerkhoffs was a Dutch international who had been the second highest scorer in Swiss football in the previous season.

Alex Elder said that we would be taking them very seriously indeed and reckoned that they did as much training as us even though some of them had other jobs. It was confirmed that both Durr and Hosp were publicans, winger Georges Vuilleumier was a postman and full back Ely Tacchella was a civil servant.

Burnley's only problem ahead of the game was Andy Lochhead, he was anxiously awaiting news of his wife Carole who was due to give birth. Just a few hours ahead of kick off he received news that he had a daughter Andrea – and so Clarets Mad would like to wish Andrea a very happy fortieth birthday today.

Andy Lochhead scores Burnley's fourth

Willie Irvine was left out of the Burnley side as we opted for a 5-4-1 formation with Arthur Bellamy replacing him and taking up his place as sweeper. That was clearly an Adamson decision, but it all looked as though it could backfire when Lausanne went in front with just sixteen minutes gone.

It came from Armbruster but they were somewhat fortunate to be in front, Lochhead a goal wrongly disallowed for offside, whilst Schneider saw one Brian O'Neil effort sail over before making an excellent save to deny him a goal.

We knew we needed to keep it tight away from home but we still looked for every opportunity to go forward and just before the half hour Ralph Coates stooped low to head home an equaliser. It started with a cross from full back John Angus which found Lochhead at the far post. Andy headed it back across for Ralph.

It was all Burnley now, Lochhead himself and then Elder went close but right on half time we got the breakthrough to take us in to the break in front. It was an identical goal to the first, Lochhead getting on the end of an Angus cross, but this time it was Harris who headed home.

Into the second half and probably the only surprise was that Burnley didn't extend their lead, such was the domination, until three minutes from the end. Elder crossed, Lochhead played it out to Angus, and for the third time in the game Andy was there to get on the end of an Angus cross. This time he headed home himself.

A 3-1 win in the away leg set it up nicely for the return six days later. Keith McNee from the Burnley Express thought that was it. “All I can say is that if Lausanne are more than part timers they certainly didn't play as if they were.

“They moved sweetly in midfield, and the front men looked useful, but they clearly lacked pace and thrust and were far too repetitive to worry the Burnley defence. They were just about as good as Stuttgart.”

The Burnley players, well most of them, were able to relax, and we believe they enjoyed a night out in Switzerland to celebrate the birth of Andy's daughter. Three of the players would be in action on the Saturday – Elder, Irvine and Sammy Todd had all been called up to play for Northern Ireland against England.

It was only the second time Burnley had three players in one international team, it wasn't to happen again for almost forty years, and because of this it enabled us to call off our game against Liverpool and remain refreshed for the second leg against Lausanne.

The teams were;

Lausanne: Schneider, Grobery, Hunzlker, Weisel, Tacchella, Durr, Chapuisat, Kerkhoffs, Hasp, Armbruster, Fragnieres.

Burnley: Adam Blacklaw, John Angus, Alex Elder, Brian O'Neil, John Talbut, Brian Miller, Willie Morgan, Andy Lochhead, Arthur Bellamy, Gordon Harris, Ralph Coates.

Referee: G Kunze (East Germany).

Stade Olympique de la Pontaise back in 1966
and the stadium today