Blackburn Rovers captain Grant Hanley has admitted that the club have underperformed this season, and that losing key players cannot be used as an excuse for a disappointing campaign.
Blackburn are currently 15th in the Championship, however they have spent much of the season staving off the threat of relegation.
And despite the club’s poor finances and the departure of key players, Hanley, speaking to the Lancashire Telegraph, believes the players cannot make excuses for where they are in the table.
“We are not where we want to be in the league. It’s been disappointing. There’s no point beating about the bush or say we’ve been unlucky. We’ve not been good enough.
“We’ve played well, and really well, at times but we’ve not taken what we really needed. Teams at the top end of the league are there because they deserve it. It’s been a disappointing season.
“Losing players is a factor but I still think we’ve got a strong squad here and I feel we’re every bit as strong if not stronger than what we were in the first half of the season.
“The bottom line is we haven’t performed enough. There have been times when we should have ground out results and we’ve not done it. The lads feel we’ve got enough quality to be in the top half of the table."
Blackburn's season has been marked by a number of key departures, seeing Josh King, Tom Cairney and Rudy Gestede leave the club in the summer, before star striker Jordan Rhodes, who was sold to promotion chasing Middlesbrough for a fee of £9 million, followed them out the back door in January.
Manager Paul Lambert has also announced that he will leave the club at the end of the season, despite doing what has widely been regarded as a sterling job at Ewood Park.
Lambert took over from Gary Bowyer in November last year, following a run of form that only had brought two wins from ten games.