Rovers boss Tony Mowbray says he is still waiting on clarity from the club’s owners over his budget next season.

That will likely hold up decisions over the out of contract players whose deals at expired in the hours after the 3-2 defeat at Luton Town.

Danny Graham was the only out of contract player to feature at Kenilworth Road, coming off the bench in the second half to make his 600th career appearance.

Stewart Downing and Jayson Leutwiler had featured in every matchday squad prior to the final game, with both not travelling, neither did Dominic Samuel who has been interesting a League One club of late.

Richie Smallwood and Sam Hart are the other two players out of contract, and look set to depart after three years at the club, while goalkeeper Christian Walton and central defender Tosin Adarabioyo have now returned to their parent clubs after their loan spells ended.

That will require a big rebuilding job at Ewood Park over the course of the season, but asked about his budget, the manager told the Lancashire Telegraph: “I haven’t had full clarity on it.

“I’m talking to the players about where we want to take the team and the club, what type of identity we’re going to have.

“Those out of contract players are out of contract as of midnight and they can look elsewhere and see what they think is right for their careers.

“I understand that, they understand that, those conversations can have some finality to them over the next day or so.”

Downing had been an impressive performer since signing a one-year from Middlesbrough last summer, featuring 43 times for the club, but the midfielder, who turned 36 on Wednesday, is among those facing an uncertain future.

The former England international has stated he would like to stay on at Ewood Park for another season, as has Danny Graham, who will be 35 by the time next season gets underway.

With the pair among the top earners at the club, that will provide a challenge for Mowbray who will likely have to work within a tighter budget as Rovers feel the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Asked about Downing’s exclusion from the squad, Mowbray said: “I wouldn’t read too much in to that, we’ll let you know in the next few days when we’ve made decisions on players.

“It’s been an opportunity since we couldn’t make the play-offs to give some young players a chance and that’s what we’ve been doing.

“We’ve been trying to have some integrity about the league, it wasn’t a total team of kids. It was important for us to put out a strong team, but there’s been an opportunity to put some young players on the pitch and giving them some experience.”

Rovers finished the season in 11th, on 63 points, four places and three points higher than last season. However, once again they saw their campaign fall away having moved in to play-off contention following the win over Bristol City last month.

In the end they lost five of their nine matches after the lockdown, picking up just 10 points out of a possible 27, with a lack of consistency having blighted their campaign.

“We fell away, we got ourselves a point outside the play-offs and inconsistency from a team who can be eight and nine out of 10 and dominant against some of the best teams in this league and then we have days like that, for spells where we’re three out of 10,” Mowbray said.

“We have to find some consistency, we have some talented players and I think we’re in transition.

“Two loan players will be going back, six players out of contract, and we’re Blackburn Rovers and we need to look like we can get out of this division.

“That’s the plan, so to finish mid-table is disappointing. Last year we were looking over our shoulders at times, but with five or six games to go we were genuinely looking to the play-offs, not over our shoulders at all, so there has been improvement.

“We need to continue that improvement, we have to keep strengthening and believe we can compete in the top six and have a real go.”