Burnley 1 -0 QPR: Clarke Carlisle keeps Clarets on track
Published 00:00 12/04/09 By
Clarke Carlisle's bullet header gave Burnley three vital points as Owen Coyle's side consolidated their place in the play-off zone.
Carlisle headed home a Robbie Blake corner at the beginning of the second half as the Clarets moved seven points clear of the pack chasing the top six.
Rangers had their moments in an entertaining match but ended a hectic week which saw manager Paulo Sousa axed after just 26 games marooned in mid-table.
Burnley started brightly with Wade Elliott having a shot after just seven seconds.
Jay Rodriguez then headed a Blake free-kick over in a highpaced start before Chris Eagles looked to have a decent penalty shout turned away after he was impeded in the area.
Coyle's side were in control but a quick break by the visitors almost led to the opening goal. Hogan Ephraim carried the ball forward before playing it out to Wayne Routledge on the right. His cross evaded the entire Clarets defence and Rowan Vine looked certain to score but the imposing figure of goalkeeper Brian Jensen blocked the striker's volley.
The Clarets came within inches of taking the lead just 45 seconds into the second half. Blake was again the supplier of a superb delivery from a right-wing corner and Carlisle sent a powabove erful header past Cerny which rattled the post.
But in the 49th minute the hosts were ahead from an identical set-piece. Blake floated the corner to the exact same spot and Carlisle again rose his marker to thump a header past Cerny.
Coyle hailed his side's character, and said: "We just have to look after ourselves and we did that today. To give that level of performance at this stage of the season spoke volumes of the side's character."
Qpr caretaker manager Gareth Ainsworth refused to discuss the departure last week of Sousa but promised that his side would play out the rest of the season with pride.
He said: "I'm proud of the lads, they battled hard. I've had one crack at being manager before and I am very proud to be involved and will continue to lead the side out for as long as I'm asked to."