Former Chelsea, Burnley midfielder Ian Britton dies

Ian Britton in action for Chelsea on March 1, 1977
© Getty Images
Former Chelsea and Burnley midfielder Ian Britton, whose goal kept the Clarets in the Football League in 1987, dies at the age of 61 following a long battle with illness.

Former Chelsea and Burnley midfielder Ian Britton has died at the age of 61 following a long battle with illness.

The Dundee-born player began his career with Chelsea, where he made 289 appearances between 1971 and 1982, scoring 34 goals in the process.

Britton was part of the Chelsea side that won promotion to the top flight in 1977, before moving back to his hometown to join Dundee United in 1982.

His season-long stint with the Tangerines saw him help the club to the only Scottish league title in their history before a brief spell with Arbroath.

He then spent three years with Blackpool before moving to Burnley in 1986 and earning cult hero status at the club by scoring the goal that kept them in the Football League.

Having initially arrived at Turf Moor on loan, Britton's header against promotion-chasing Leyton Orient in the final game of his first season at the club saw the Clarets pick up the 2-1 win they needed to avoid dropping into the Conference.

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