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Appleton: Players hurt by exit

Michael Appleton admitted he will have to lift his Blackburn players after they suffered a painful 1-0 defeat to Millwall in the FA Cup quarter-final replay.

Last Updated: 14/03/13 at 17:03 Post Comment

Michael Appleton: Blackburn boss could not fault his the effort of his players

Michael Appleton: Blackburn boss could not fault his the effort of his players

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Danny Shittu headed Millwall into the lead before the break and Blackburn could not break down the visitors' stubborn defence in the second-half at Ewood Park.

Appleton could not fault his side's endeavour but admitted they lacked a cutting edge as their chance to reach a Wembley semi-final slipped away.

"You can probably imagine the atmosphere in the dressing room after the game," he said. "It's the type of situation that, as a manager, you don't forget.

"To lose how we did lose, to a set-play, probably makes it even harder to take.

"We huffed and puffed, the lads gave us absolutely everything to be fair.

"I had to make a lot of changes again due to injuries, which was hard, but I can't ask any more of them.

"From an effort point of view, there's nothing more any of the players could have given me.

"From a quality point of view, yes we could have been better."

Appleton remains determined to instil a winning attitude at Blackburn as they approach the last few months of the Championship campaign.

"We've got 10 massive games now," he said. "There's an opportunity to change the whole mentality of the football club.

"For probably two or three seasons now it's been acceptable to lose and it's not too much of a bad thing, and that's the hardest thing for me to take - for some of the players it doesn't hurt as much as it should do.

"I'm not saying that they don't hurt, but it doesn't hurt as much as it should do."

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Readers' Comments

I

think all those names linked to United exits make sense. Kagawa has never really looked like hitting the form he had at Dortmund and Fellaini is radioactive after last season (even though I think he's been unfairly singled out for criticism). Nani and Anderson have had more than their fair share of chances so they are done, and Hernandez deserves better than warming a bench.

ted, manchester
The Insecure Gossip

H

e'll be off to Spurs (or better) in January and I don't blame him. Looking forward to re-signing Grant Holt as his replacement though.

notalentjones
Benteke ignoring speculation

I

n fairness, he does look absolutely shattered in that photo.....

FairyNuff
Shaw told to shape up

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