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It was Burnley’s day against Crystal Palace and, as you would expect of him, Roy Hodgson was very honest in his opinion of the game and of his own team’s performance.

He admitted they’d lost to a better team and when asked if they had lost it because of the early setbacks they suffered, he said: “I think I’d be being kind on us if I made it as simple as that. Of course we got off to a very bad start, to concede two goals early on was going to make life extremely difficult for the rest of the game.

“(Blaming that) would be unkind on Burnley and their performance, which was clearly so much better than ours. So I think I have to think of it deeper and ask more questions of the team and of ourselves, rather than just put it down to being a bit unlucky to get off to a slow start and they scored a couple of good goals.

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“We changed one or two little things in terms of the way we thought we were going to attack to help ourselves out. We were trying to encourage the players to believe: ‘Okay, if we can get a goal and get back into this, it’s not all over and the way you’ve played and approached the game in the last 20-25 minutes after conceding those goals would suggest that’s a possibility’.

“But the third goal, of course, probably killed that hope. We did keep going and we did try and we actually had more possession in their half of the field, but I’m afraid the bottom line is we lost to a better team, were clearly beaten and the 3-0 scoreline tells it all.”

Sean Dyche, who saw his side lose yet another player through injury before the game in Matěj Vydra,  was delighted with the performance and said: “The fact you are away from home to a good outfit, and given the energy, tempo, mixed play, quality and some terrific displays, that’s probably up there as one of our most complete performances this season.

“It’s a very pleasing win and we started well. I had to make some important decisions in the week for the cup game, but I felt the main side that had been playing needed a rest. I got a few question marks when we went out, and I felt then we could have delivered a performance to win, but we didn’t, whereas today we did. It’s risk and reward of course. When you deliver a performance like that it makes sense, and you have to say it was a good call because the players looked so strong.”

Dyche added: “We have a lot of games and we’ve picked up more injuries today, so we are trying to do what we can to protect the players. We wanted that demand from the players physically and they delivered it, pressing out of possession and the play in possession. That’s how I want us to play and you can’t always do that in the Premier League because of the strength of the league. Sometimes you have to fight and do everything you can to get a result and other times, like today, we find that mixed play than can be effective.

“There was a really good energy to the side mixed with good quality. We got off to a great start and the energy in the side, the tempo in the play and commitment to the cause were important factors. When you throw in some quality as well, it was overall a very good performance.”

There was never a likelihood that he wouldn’t be asked about our third goal, just Matt Lowton’s second for Burnley and his first in the Premier League. “What a goal it was from Matt,” Dyche said. “He has come back into the dressing room to a round of applause from the lads, and rightly so because he has been in really good form lately. He’s found a nice groove to his performances and some of his passing today was excellent, but the finish was sublime.”

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