Chris Burke says the departure of Alex Dyer as manager has been tough to take in the Kilmarnock dressing room as Killie fight for Premiership survival.

The well-liked boss left the club by mutual consent last weekend after a 3-2 defeat to St Johnstone, a result which was followed up by a 4-0 Rugby Park loss to Celtic on Tuesday. Burke felt personally that he should have accomplished more in that match, the Ayrshire men now sat in 10th.

Kilmarnock v Celtic - Ladbrokes Scottish Premiership

Killie were beaten by Celtic. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

He said: “We need to believe in the process because we have shown in the past we can win and draw matches but we have to do it sooner rather than later. The manner of the Celtic defeat was hard to take but that result won’t define our season. The scoreline wasn’t a reflection on the match but football is ruthless and Celtic were.

“We probably lacked that bit of quality and I put myself in that category, I should have scored two goals. Football is fine margins. We have to put it behind us, start again on Saturday and look forward to the St Mirren match.”

It’s been a difficult week for Kilmarnock ahead of the trip to St Mirren but Burke is hoping for two things. One is that Dyer is remembered in a fond way at Rugby Park, helping the club into Europe as assistant to Steve Clarke, and the other is that key players return to fitness sooner rather than later.

Kilmarnock v St. Mirren - Ladbrokes Scottish Premiership

Hoping Dyer is remembered well at Kilmarnock. (Photo by Roddy Scott/SNS Group via Getty Images)

Burke said: “It’s not easy, trust me. I have been there a few times, probably more than most in our changing room. As a player you feel awful, you are a huge part of the manager leaving.

“People say the buck stops with the manager but we have to take equal responsibility as players – we didn’t do enough for him. He’s not just a great guy but he’s a great coach as well. I speak for everyone when I say he will be remembered in a successful manner at this club. It’s hard because we all liked him.

“People have been hit harder with this pandemic than others. I know that sounds like an excuse but football is fine margins and we are losing players who have been very influential for us.

“Hopefully we can get them back soon because they will be needed. But in that changing room we still have belief, we’ll stick together and just need to have a great attitude every day in training.”

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