CERTAIN individuals are more important than others when it comes to derby day.
People like Simon Garner, a man for whom the East Lancashire derby produced some special moments, were simply irreplaceable when it came to games against Burnley.
In the current era, that role is filled by David Dunn.
Dunny, from Great Harwood, is such an important character for Rovers against Burnley.
The midfielder is the only person in the Ewood camp with a proper understanding of the importance of the match.
Because of that, his influence is priceless.
Yesterday he gave 110 per cent and battled for everything.
So I do not think I was alone in being stunned at his removal from the field to be replaced by loanee Liam Feeney.
Feeney, a man who can’t get a game at Millwall yet was good enough for us, got booked before he had even kicked the ball.
There was a sense of inevitability around what happened next.
Within minutes, the dynamic of the game had changed completely and Burnley equalised from a set piece.
Granted, it is unheard of for Dunny to last 90 minutes these days – but against Burnley I am certain he would have managed.
The turning point in the game, however, was earlier in the second half.
Two inches to the right and Jordan Rhodes would have doubled our lead and perhaps put the game beyond Burnley, but his shot cannoned back off the post and our rivals were off the hook.
Yet again we were ahead and allowed the opposition to come back into the match.
Regardless of the opposition, that lack of composure is what has undone us on too many occasions.
Our defending of set pieces has also regularly been our undoing and we were again caught napping.
The usually solid Paul Robinson can also take a portion of blame for his part in both Burnley goals.
So this is how it feels to lose against Burnley. Never in all my 27 years have I experienced this before.
I guess it had to happen one day.
The worrying thing now is how long before we beat them again?
It was 35 years since a Burnley win. Now it is going on five years since Rovers won!