The season began on 12th august with a 2-2 draw at home to Carlisle after twice being a goal behind. The attendance was disappointing too, less than 10,000 the lowest gate since the the War. Keith Newton made his Burnley debut in this game.
A draw at Fulham followed, then three straight wins saw the Clarets emerge as early season leaders of the Division.
A narrow win at home to Blackpool, 4-3 after being 4-0 in front and coasting, and five draws saw Burnley still unbeaten but now behind Sheffield Wednesday.
The last of these draws, 2-2 at Luton was the last appearance in a Burnley shirt of one of the club's finest post-war talents. Dave Thomas had made his Burnley debut in 1967, the youngest Claret ever to appear in Division One and second youngest ever behind Tommy Lawton in 1936.Thomas was transferred to QPR who were emerging as Burnley's main rivals for promotion.
Three more wins and two draws followed including 3-3 at Middlesborough where Burnley came from 3-1 down with 10 minutes to go.
The unbeaten run ended, somewhat disappointingly at home to Orient on 11th November after 22 games but the Clarets were still on top of Division Two, 2 points in front of QPR, with Luton and Aston Villa a further point behind.
Four more wins followed all by 1-0 then home draws agaisnt Oxford and Fulham and a 2-1 win at Blackpool.
The first game of 1973, on 6th January saw Burnley travel to Villa Park, so often a graveyard of Claret aspirations, this time, however, Burnley turned on the style and walked all over Aston Villa 3-0, to remain out in front.Villa themselves were in third spot, but a gap was opening up between Burnley and QPR, and the rest. The top two met at Loftus Road on 27th January, but on one of the very few occasions during this triumphant season, Burnley were second best and the Londoners emerged 2-0 winners.
Three more wins and two draws followed, then a surprise 0-1 home defeat by Sheffield Wednesday kept the promotion pot simmering a little longer.
A single goal victory at Cardiff followed, then two more home wins against Portsmouth and Millwall. The Clarets were back on the rails until a visit to the City Ground, Nottingham on the last day of March.
Just about everything that could go wrong did that day as the League leaders were hammered 3-0 by mid-table Forest.
The shock was soon out of the teams system however and a solid 2-0 win at Huddersfield on 14th April brought promotion to withing two points.
Nearly 23.000 people packed Turf Moor on the Monday of Easter week 1973 to see two goals from Paul Fletcher that were enough to beat Cup-Finalists Sunderland, and guide the Clarets safely back to the top flight.
A fine 2-0 win against bogey-team Oxford United followed, then successive 3-0 victories at Turf Moor against Brighton and Luton brought Burnley to within a point of the title. The final league game of the season was at Deepdale on 28th April and just as Burnley needed a point to clinch the second division championship ahead of QPR, Preston needed a point to stay in Division Two.
As Burnley fans of the late 60s and early 70s will verify, Colin did the simple things rather well. He strode forward, and from 28 yards smashed the championship winning goal high into the net leaving the keeper helpless.
After a flurry of excitement, the game petered out into the draw that both teams wanted, and Burnley were Champions.
Back then to the first division. Back to the top flight to rub shoulders with the City giants and the cheque-book managers. But for how long?
Taken from Burnley v Scunthorpe Match Programme, 18th December 1989, extract compiled by Ray Simpson and Wallace Chadwick
1972 - 1973 Division Two