Jake’s Kean to make up for Blackburn Rovers cup woe
JAKE Kean will feature in his first East Lancashire derby on Sunday, and the keeper says Blackburn Rovers must use the deep pain of missing out on a place at Wembley to motivate them against Burnley.
Kean admitted he and his team-mates were ‘heartbroken’ after Wednesday’s FA Cup quarter final defeat at home to Millwall, which saw Rovers miss out on a semi final against Wigan at Wembley next month.
It was a loss that left some players in tears – including David Dunn, who has never played at England’s national stadium during his long career.
For Kean, who produced a man of the match display to help Rovers win at Arsenal in the fifth round, an appearance in the semi finals would have been a dream – only three months since he broke into the side on a regular basis.
And the 22-year-old says no-one should be in any doubt about how much the players are hurting about the Millwall defeat.
“It was heartbreaking,” he said.
“We were absolutely gutted, every single one of us. It was horrible. It was a typical FA Cup game, like it was at their place.
“One chance was enough to win it and that was that, they’re going to Wembley and we’re not.
“There were lads in the dressing room who are heartbroken and I was the same myself.
“I didn’t really want to talk to anybody and or see anybody, to clear my head.”
Kean, though, knows Rovers must now start to turn their thoughts to two Lancashire derbies at Ewood Park.
Manager Michael Appleton’s former club Blackpool visit on Good Friday, March 29, but first comes Sunday’s derby with Burnley at Ewood Park.
For Kean, it will be his first match against the Clarets, with Paul Robinson in goal when the sides drew 1-1 at Turf Moor earlier in the season.
Also among those who could play in an East Lancashire derby for the first time are Leon Best, Markus Olsson and Nuno Gomes, who came off the bench against Millwall.
But Kean is well aware how important the Burnley game is to the club’s supporters and says the squad must somehow turn the misery of their FA Cup exit into a motivating factor against the Clarets.
“We’ve got to,” he said.“We have got to try to make amends and use it as kick on for us to get all three points on Sunday.
“It is going to be difficult to look forward, but there are two massive games coming up for us so we’re straight back into it.
“It will take a while to get the cup game out of our heads and obviously the disappointment from that, but we’ve got to look forward and move on towards Burnley.
“I am looking forward to the Burnley game, more so after Wednesday because we’ve just got to go again.”