SEAN Dyche admitted he was left scratching his head after Burnley suffered back-to-back home defeats for the first time under his watch.

Not only was the Clarets boss baffled by not being able to convert one of 27 shots registered, he was mystified at not being awarded a penalty when he felt there were at least two clear claims.

Both Danny Ings and Ashley Barnes were impeded in the 18-yard box in the second half, but referee Dean Whitestone turned a blind eye.

It meant Jacob Butterfield's breakaway 51st minute goal was enough to settle this afternoon's game, and make Middlesbrough the first team to do the double over Burnley this season.

But with the Clarets looking to edge closer to automatic promotion to the Premier League, Dyche was adamant it was not for the want of trying to earn at least a point.

“It was total domination and unfortunately a situation where things outside our control have affected the game," he said.

"Their keeper is man of the match, and the officials weren't man of the match.

"We were scratching our head at everything.

"It's a top end performance by our standards, totally dominant, fantastic energy, fantastic quality on show. It's incredible the ball doesn't arrive in their net at some point.

"But it’s not the first time decisions have gone against us this season and we’ve learned to grin and bear it.

“We've had seven penalties not given this season, that's nine now, but we know what we are about and we have performed fantastically well again today.

“There were so many positives and we never stopped searching for at least an equaliser."