Burnley have named Brian Laws as their new manager on a two-and-a-half year deal.

The former Clarets defender is a shock appointment after being recently sacked from Sheffield Wednesday, who sit in the relegation zone of the Championship.

Laws said: “It’s like coming back home and I am relishing the challenge, looking forward to it and I am honoured to be Burnley manager.”

Reports suggested Burnley were ready to make Doncaster Rovers boss Sean O’Driscoll their manager but that a compensation package could not be agreed between the clubs.

But FansOnline has learned that O’Driscoll simply decided he didn’t want to leave his club in the lurch and after giving the proposition some thought, decided to stay put.

Huddersfield Town manager Lee Clark was also offered the job, we understand, but also chose to stay with his current club.

That left Burnley short on options and Laws was effectively the last man standing. As an out-of-work boss with Burnley connections and a known friend of chairman Barry Kilby, it was an easy and cheap decision for the Burnley board to make.

Russ Wilcox will be Laws’ assistant and midfield general Graham Alexander will take up a coaching role alongside his playing duties. With Steven Caldwell out with a groin strain, Alexander is already captaining the side and some will assume he is being groomed to take over from former first team coach Steve Davis, who many expected to be a future Burnley manager, but who left the club earlier this week to link up with Coyle at Bolton.

Laws will also bring in highly respected Plymouth coach John Carver to join his backroom staff.

Plymouth manager Paul Mariner admitted after his side’s FA Cup defeat to Newcastle United at St James’ Park tonight that he would lose the coach.

Carver was the late and great Sir Bobby Robson’s assistant when Newcastle were playing in the Champions’ League and even led the Magpies to a 3-0 win over Blackburn Rovers as caretaker manager after Robson’s departure from the club.

It’s fair to say that reaction to Laws’ appointment from fans has been muted to say the least.

However, a Gary Megson at Bolton situation is not on the cards with Burnley fans defiant behind their team after Coyle’s betrayal.

Laws could hardly have a tougher game to open with as Burnley travel to Old Trafford at the weekend knowing that a defeat and other results going against them could land them in the bottom three.