Tony Mowbray praised “wonderful footballer” Ben Brereton, whose first Blackburn goal helped them to a comfortable 2-0 win over relegated Bolton.
Brereton, who signed for the club in August, made the crucial breakthrough in the Sky Bet Championship clash with a calm 12-yard finish on the half hour.
Adam Armstrong, once on loan at Bolton, haunted his former club with a close range finish in the 50th minute – his ninth strike this season.
After losing nine games in 11, Blackburn have now won four in succession for the second time this season to move to within a point of the top half.
Mowbray said: “Ben’s had limited time. I have said all season, I’m sure he enjoys his time here.
“I see him laughing and joking with the lads every day. I know that (Danny) Graham and (Bradley) Dack have really warmed to him, because he is a young boy.
“I try to put it into context. If you think of Armstrong being a young boy, this kid’s two years younger than Armstrong. But he’s a wonderful footballer and that’s why he’s here.
“That’s why we invested the money, not necessarily for today, but for tomorrow, by that I mean the start of next season.
“He’s got to be pushing hard to make sure he’s a starter in our team. I’m sure he’ll do that, work hard through pre-season and hopefully he has a fantastic year next year for us.
“I’m delighted for Brereton to score his goal. It was a great goal against a team making it difficult.”
Bolton have now lost 11 of their last 13 away games and have failed to score in four of their last five on the road.
Their assistant manager, Steve Parkin, said those missed chances and the lack of investment have proved costly.
He said: “The result is disappointing. I think we’ve had enough of last third opportunities to get on the scoresheet and make the game tighter than it looked.
“We’ve had good opportunities to score goals in the first half and second half. I’m just disappointed that we didn’t get one of course.
“The quality in this division, they’ve left Danny Graham out and put another striker on (Brereton) that cost the best part of £6million.
“His first opportunity, he’s scored. And I think that this is the level and quality of this division. You do have to take your chances because sooner or later, if you don’t, then you can suffer.
“It’s been very trying and difficult with the circumstances we’ve had. But it’s a tough division that’s full of absolute quality.
“We have suffered a lot this season in terms of scoring goals. Sooner or later, you’re bound to succeed and that was the story of today.”
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