‘WRITE Burnley off at your peril!’ – that’s the warning from Queens Park Rangers manager Harry Redknapp.
The London club started the new year outside of the automatic promotion places, trailing the second placed Clarets by one point after the New Year’s Day games, when Burnley beat Huddersfield 3-2 at Turf Moor and a late Charlie Austin goal earned the Hoops a 2-1 home win over Doncaster.
Burnley maintained their advantage at the weekend with a 2-1 win at struggling Yeovil Town, in which top scorer Danny Ings and Sam Vokes scored in either half, while QPR won 3-1 at Ipswich Town to stay third.
Redknapp was quizzed live on national radio about the current standings at top end of the Championship, and when it was put to him that Burnley were “hanging in there”, the QPR boss hit back.
“People keep writing Burnley off. I don’t think Burnley are going to fade away,” said the former Spurs chief.
“What I’ve seen of Burnley they are a very good team.
“Their two front men are excellent – they score goals and they both scored again at the weekend.”
Redknapp has been equally impressed by Burnley’s defensive work, and singled out Kieran Trippier for praise.
“They are solid. The right back is an outstanding young player,” he continued.
“They are a good side so I think they will be bang there at the end.”
But Redknapp expects leaders Leicester City to be tough to topple.
“Leicester look very good. They are full of pace, full of energy. Good team,” he noted, adding that there were other serious challengers in the promotion race.
“There are lots of teams below us. Derby and Nottingham Forest are all there,” he said.
“You wouldn’t like to predict at the moment.
“A couple of results either way, it could all change so quickly.”
Former Sheffield United and Crystal Palace boss Neil Warnock, who was also on the show, said he had been impressed by Burnley but had concerns over their squad size.
“Sean Dyche is a very good manager,” he said, adding that Ings was a major asset for the Clarets: “If there’s a better striker at the moment I have not seen him given the goals he has scored but if QPR sign a striker I think they’ve got a far better squad.”