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In Memoriam: Frank Burrows

24 November 2021

Scunthorpe United is saddened to learn of the passing of former player Frank Burrows, aged 77.

Born in Larkhall, Scotland in January 1944, he began his football career with Raith Rovers before making the move south of the border to join the Iron in 1965.

In a three-year spell at the club, he would rack up a total of 106 league appearances, scoring four goals. In his debut campaign at Scunthorpe, the side would finished third in Division Three and narrowly missed out on promotion. The following two seasons wouldn't be as favourable in the standings, with the side finishing 18th in 1966-67 before relegation to Division Four after finishing bottom a year later.

Burrows would then sign for Swindon Town in 1968. He'd become a Robins legend, racking up over 350 appearances for the side, appearing for the club in 1968-69 which is renown for being the best campaign in the club's history. That year included promotion and a famous League Cup victory over Arsenal at Wembley. 

He would have a brief loan spell with Mansfield Town in 1974, but Swindon would be where he completed his playing career two years later in 1976. In his final playing season, he would evidently transfer over to be a player-coach and, with his ambition to go down the managerial route, he left Swindon to become an assistant at Portsmouth. 

In 1979, when manager Jimmy Dickinson resigned, he was the natural replacement and took the hotseat for three years before returning to an assistant role at Sunderland. He would then take the first of two managerial appointments at Cardiff City in 1986, leading the side to promotion in 1987-88.

He would return to Pompey in 1989 as assistant, and would again be manager of the club a year later. In 1991, he Burrows would cross the border back to Wales to this time take charge of Swansea City, where he led them to victory in the 1994 Football League Trophy in a successful four-year spell.

1998 would see him return to the Bluebirds for his second spell at Ninian Park, shortly after a spell under Harry Redknapp in the backroom staff at West Ham United. Under Burrows, Cardiff won promotion to the old Division Two in the 1998–99 season, but would leave during the following campaign.

From 2000 until 2004, Burrows was assistant manager to Gary Megson at West Bromwich Albion and helped them win promotion to the Premier League twice. During that spell, he battled kidney cancer, and ended the four years in a caretaker manager role for two games.

He'd link up with Gary Megson once more in the Leicester City set-up, two years after rejecting a similar role with Megson at Nottingham Forest.

The thoughts and condolences of everyone at the club are with Frank's family and friends.


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