"We deserved more" - academy boss Pepper

Academy manager Jon Pepper felt Burnley's under 23s deserved more from their defeat to Millwall at Turf Moor.

Monday, 10th September 2018, 5:07 pm
Updated Monday, 10th September 2018, 5:12 pm
Burnley FC academy manager Jon Pepper

Tinashe Chakwana looked to have salvaged a point for the hosts in their Professional Development League fixture, cancelling out Lewis White's opener, but Lions substitute George Alexander struck late on.

It was another disappointing outcome for the Clarets, who surrendered two goal leads in games against Coventry and QPR, but Pepper has been buoyed by the performances.

"You’re disappointed because the lads worked hard, we had a lot of opportunities, we got in behind them quite often," he said.

"You get to 90-odd minutes and you’re thinking ‘just see the game out’, take a draw and move on.

"It’s disappointing but I thought the lads played well, especially first half, they dominated the game.

The character was pleasing, when you concede in the first three minutes you’re thinking what could happen.

"But they reacted well and they deserved the equaliser and they probably deserved a little bit more, particularly from the first half."

Pepper acknowledges that this is a significant step up for many of these players having stepped up to Category 2 status last year and he's certain that the academy is in a much healthier position.

"Last year was our first in this league, it’s a big step up for some of them," he said. "They’re still quite young, 18 or 19 essentially, most of them are under 20.

"We’re really pleased with how they’ve started and the lads are looking back at games where they’ve dropped points and they’re disappointed thinking we should have had points from those games.

"We’re in a healthier position, expectations within the group are a lot higher than 12 months ago."