Mystery of Burnley FC's 'painted face' fan is solved

THE mystery of the painted face Clarets fan has been solved!

The riddle began when Clarets fan Brian Halsted, from Australia, returned to his home town for the team's match against Bristol City in May.

Brian took a snap outside Turf Moor of the fan whose face was painted in claret and blue squares.

Apparently, the photo of the painted man became a hit Down Under and an Express appeal has now traced him.

John Withington (35), of Rome Avenue, Burnley, emailed to say he was the man under the paint and revealed he intends to paint his face in a different pattern for every match he attends this season.

Father-of-eight John said: "It seems like I've found fame at last – even as far away as Australia. My wife Wendy paints my face after we've thought about what pattern to have.

"I'm originally from Cheshire but have lived in Burnley for 11 years and really got into watching the Clarets two years ago when my seven-year-old daughter Leeha became a cheerleader at the Turf.

"I'm really jealous because she gets to stand in the tunnel with the players and I'd love to be a mascot.

"Since my picture went in the paper I've had people coming up to me when I'm out shopping, saying they recognise me."

John also said Sky TV cameras captured his painted face several times during Burnley's play-off semi-final first leg against Reading, but he has never seen the footage.

If anyone has a video of the game they can call John on 620476.

>>Hunt is on for Burnley FC fan who is a hit in Australia