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It was very much Burnley’s night at Ewood Park with a 2-0 win against rivals Blackburn Rovers which ended with their manager Tony Mowbray admitting the gap between the two clubs right now.

This was Mowbray’s first East Lancs derby and after he had seen his side go out he said: “I think they were on top in a few departments with their extra quality. It was a tough ask, I thought we battled away.

“I’m disappointed with the goals of course, we needed to keep it tight as long as we could. The second goal right on half time was a killer for us and it was difficult to pick them up. I thought in the second half we had a go, we competed yet we know we have a long way to go.”

He added: “They are a Premier League side, they just spent £15m on one player. There is a gulf there, we have to accept that. The job for everybody at this football club is to put this club back on a level with them so we can get to the point where we can compete with them.

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“At this moment there is a big gulf and at times it showed on the pitch tonight. I thought the players gave their all, but ultimately we come out with a defeat.”

Sean Dyche has certainly got the knack of beating Blackburn, this was his fourth win against them in seven and the other three were draws.

He celebrated with the fans at the end and then said: “There were a lot of good performances tonight. A lot was made about whether I would change the team tonight and I made it clear, we are not resting players.

“It’s not about resting players. They don’t need a rest now, but we need everyone fit and sharp because the Premier League is a very, very tough league. You need to be physically and mentally right and what a great game to allow you that.”

He continued: “We are adding to the group with layers and this is a stronger group now. That doesn’t guarantee us anything going forwards, but there was a lot on show tonight, from players who we have brought in. Different players, for different reasons, showed what they are about tonight in what was an awkward game.

“This game goes beyond the cup, we all know that, so to get that experience was essential. They tried to get us on the back foot by putting the ball into the box from every position in the early stages, and we were very strong. As the game settled, we began to play and there was some really good stuff tonight, so 5,000 fans have gone home happy.

“For our fans it’s fantastic. They were in great voice again tonight and for that 90 minutes, we all understand what the outcome is; we have to win! Beyond that, the reality is we want to continue to grow in the Premier League, but I get it that the fans here wanted us to win, which we did, so I am very pleased.”

Jeff Hendrick was ruled out with an injury and Jon Walters looked as though he was going to have a very short night when the stretcher came on for him in the first couple of minutes of the game. He was able to continue but succumbed to the ankle injury before half time.

Dyche explained: “We are waiting to hear on Jon. He managed to play on and I wasn’t sure if I should make the decision for him. He’s a very honest player. I’m not sure how right he was and eventually he had to come off, so we’ll see how he is, but we don’t think it’s anything too serious.”

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