Steven Defour highlighted the ruthlessness of Manchester City after they ended the Clarets’ FA Cup hopes with a comprehensive win at the Etihad Stadium.
While City took their goal tally for the season to 108 with a second successive 5-0 home win over Sean Dyche’s men, the Clarets were left to rue a missed chance from Matej Vydra which might have kept an upset on the cards.
Vydra missed the target when left one-on-one with the score at 1-0 early in the second half.
And while Defour expressed sympathy for his striking colleague, he paid tribute to the finishing power of the Premier League champions.
“It’s like a goalkeeper, you don’t get to make mistakes, especially when you play against a team like City when you don’t get loads of chances,” said the Clarets’ midfielder.
“They don’t give you lots of chances and even when they mix the team up it’s still a very strong team.
“But I think the turning point was Vyds’ chance. If that one goes in, we get more confident and they maybe get a bit more nervous.
“A few minutes later it got 2-0 and they are just so ruthless and just want to keep scoring goals.
“I think after 2-0 it kind of broke us. They were full of confidence and they can bring on players when you don’t lose quality.”
Three goals in 20 second-half minutes and a late penalty from substitute Sergio Aguero swept City into round five as they keep firing on all fronts.
Burnley’s sole focus is now on the Premier League and winning their fight to maintain their top-flight status.
And the plus-point to come out of the defeat at City was vital game-time for a number of players heading back to full fitness or short of recent competitive action.
Defour is among them and got through 77 minutes to keep himself in the frame for a place in the squad when the Clarets bid to extend their unbeaten four-match run at a resurgent Manchester United next Tuesday night.
“I feel very good,” he told Clarets Player HD.
“We have a lot of important games and everybody will get a chance at some point.
“We’re still fine. Today we took five goals but we gave it a go.
“We wanted to do something but unfortunately we didn’t, and we have to look to the Premier League and staying up.
“They (United) are in good form but in the past two years we’ve got a good result at Old Trafford and maybe we can get another one.”