Tony Mowbray said ‘it’s difficult to put in to words something that is so sad’ after the passing of former Rovers midfielder Peter Whittingham.

Whittingham, Mowbray’s first signing at the club in June 2017, died in hospital last week after following an ‘accidental fall’ at a licensed premises in south Wales on March 7.

Tributes poured in for the 35-year-old who spent 12 months at Ewood Park, playing 21 times in their League One promotion campaign.

Whittingham spent 10 years at Cardiff City before finishing his career with Rovers, with Mowbray saying the former England Under-21 international showed his class on and off the pitch.

“It’s difficult to put in to words something that is so sad,” Mowbray told the Lancashire Telegraph.

“He will be remembered for his brilliant years as a footballer, his influence on the football pitch, particularly with Cardiff, and how he brought a bit of class to the game.

“He was not a day’s problem. He didn’t play every game as he did for much of his career, but he had an influence and the lads really appreciated him and what he did.

“I’m not sure what words I can add to what others have been saying other than a lovely lad, a wonderful footballer.

“It is very sad news and hard to believe really.”