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Millwall cup exit was one of my career low points, says Rovers ace Dunn
9:00am Thursday 12th December 2013 in Football
DAVID Dunn will be out to avenge one of the most painful defeats of his Blackburn Rovers career this weekend.
Rovers’ FA Cup quarter-final reverse at home to Millwall last season, and the chance to play eventual winners Wigan Athletic at Wembley in the semis, still rankles with Dunn.
The veteran midfielder believes some of his team-mates on that demoralising night did not leave ‘everything’ out on the field.
The memory of the loss will linger with Dunn forever.
But the 33-year-old wants to push it further to the back of his mind by helping Rovers to a victory over Millwall on Saturday when the Lions make their first return to Ewood Park for a crucial Championship clash.
“That defeat was hard to take, a real tough one,” said Dunn, who won the Worthington Cup final with Rovers at the Millennium Stadium in 2002.
“I’ve been there and experienced how good those days are and when you’ve got a chance to experience them you’ve got to grab the chance with both hands.
“When you get so close it hurts. I was looking around and I felt some people felt they would get another chance at it, another bite of the cherry.
“But I tell you what, chances to go and play in major semi-finals and finals are few and far between in your career.
“And that’s what was so disappointing for me. I just didn’t think everyone left everything out there.”
Dunn is now in his 13th season with Rovers and on Saturday, in the 0-0 draw at QPR, he came off the bench to make his 350th appearance for his hometown club.
The former England international’s determination to see Rovers succeed burns as bright as ever.
But he feels players coming through the ranks no longer feel the pain of defeat as much as he always has and always will.
Dunn said: “This isn’t a hit on the younger players but I think when they do get beat – and this isn’t about our club, it’s across the board – that they can forget about it very quickly. That, in a way, is a positive.
“But for me sometimes it doesn’t hurt enough to get beat.
“I remember when we got beat by Chelsea in the FA Cup semi-finals and Morten (Gamst Pedersen) missed that header late on.
“Although it didn’t affect me on the pitch, it bothered me mentally for a good few months.
“Things still eat away at me because I care.
“You want all players to taste that bitter feel after you get beat so you come back stronger afterwards.”
The draw with QPR left Rovers 13th, seven points behind the play-off places.
Rovers’ next four games, starting with Millwall on Saturday, are against teams currently below them in the table.
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