Claret Lewis crosses the divide as he signs deal at Blackburn Rovers

Split loyalties: Lewis Mansell
Split loyalties: Lewis Mansell

Burnley fan Lewis Mansell has signed for rivals Blackburn Rovers.

Blessed Trinity student Lewis, 16, has been at Blackburn since he was 13 years old and has just signed a two-year scholarship at Ewood Park.

“I have always been a Burnley fan but I got picked up by Blackburn when I was playing for Barrowford Celtic,” said the striker.

“I got a lot of stick from my Burnley friends at first but not really any more. I didn’t know if I was going to be kept on and it was horrible in the car going over to Blackburn to see if I had got a scholarship but I was really happy when they said I had. There were 10 of us out of about 16 who were kept on so it was a nervous time.

“I just want to be a professional footballer now although I’m not sure who I want to win when Burnley and Blackburn face each other at the moment!”

Lewis scored the opening goal as Blessed Trinity won the ESFA Under 15 National Schools Cup for the first time last year, beating Winterbourne International Academy 5-0 at Pride Park.

Trinity team-mate Willem Tomlinson, who scored twice in the final, has also signed a scholarship with Blackburn.