SEAN Dyche admitted he was left scratching his head after Burnley suffered a 3-1 home defeat to Crystal Palace.

The Clarets had much the better of the first half but trailed to Phil Bardsley's 16th minute own goal.

Michy Batshuayi made it two early in the second half before Wilfried Zaha's individual effort sealed the points with 14 minutes to go.

Ashley Barnes headed in a consolation for the Clarets in the closing stages but, despite Burnley having 18 shots and 57 per cent possession, they fell to a second straight defeat to drop to 16th in the table.

They remain five points clear of Cardiff City in 18th but Dyche felt his side's display was an improvement on the midweek reverse at Newcastle United.

"It was a strange game, and the wrong outcome for us, very strong first half performance, and you're scratching your head that you're 1-0 down," said the Clarets boss.

"They didn't do too much. I'm not sure they had a shot on target, but they did finish off a counter, a bit fortunately obviously, and then in the second half you concede early and that's a real blow.

"When you're playing against a side with counter quality, which they have - their away record is better than their home record, and they've done that well and found those clinical moments.

"Really, the measure of the game was that, they found those clinical moments and we didn't.

"We had enough of the game, we created enough - I think we had 18 efforts. So it's a head scratcher, but credit Palace, they've done that to other teams, absorbed, countered and been clinical."

Chris Wood had the best chance of the first period for the Clarets when his driven effort was kept out by Wayne Hennessey at his near post.

Dyche felt the second goal was the key moment in the game with Batshuayi's powerful effort providing the Eagles with breathing space.

"The second goal was the biggest goal," he added. "The first was against the feel of the game, and if we respond to that early, when we had moments, Woody has a big chance and we knocked on the door.

"The difference was the clinical moments."

On too many occasions the final pass let Burnley down, and although they threatened an unlikely late rally when Barnes struck and sub Peter Crouch was denied by a fine Hennessey save, it was not to be for the Clarets.

"We've been in situations,and positions, where that final pass or moment of quality was lacking, and that's something we continue to work on," added Dyche.

"The cross count is through the roof, we were in the final third so many times but we couldn't find the killer moments.

"We've had chances, been in brilliant positions and not found the final pass.

"The players got in a fog for a few minutes (after Palace's third) but came out of it, scored a goal and Crouchy's forced a brilliant save.

"We kept at it and if Crouchy had scored you wonder if we are going to have that big finish, that 3-3.

"The other night (at Newcastle) I didn't think our performance was good enough, but today the detail wasn't good enough because the performance was good enough to get something from the game."