Jannik Vestergaard hailed a spirited performance from Southampton as they were narrowly edged out by reigning Premier League champions Manchester City at Etihad Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Saints led for much of the tie, with a goal scored by James Ward-Prowse in the 13th minute, but eventually succumbed to two second-half City strikes, ending the tie 2-1 in the hosts' favour.
The performance itself, full of fight and determination, pleased the defender, but he also explains how that was tainted somewhat by the end result.
"It's a tough result considering how long we were in the lead," Vestergaard reflected. "Considering the effort we all put in.
"It was actually a great experience being out there today, even with all the pressure we had to withstand.
jannik vestergaardmeasured by our effort, i think we deserved to get something. so that is hard to take.
on City defeat
"Obviously the last week hasn't been easy for us; not for our fans, not for our families, not for anyone. So it was important to come out and show a reaction.
"Show some pride, and I think we did that. In the end it wasn't quite enough. Measured on our effort, I think we deserved to get something, so that is hard to take.
"This is one of the best teams in the world. We needed an extraordinary effort, we knew we'd have to defend a lot. Everyone stuck in there.
"Everyone was fighting. From a team perspective, this was very important for us. I was pleased with how we defended, but of course I would have liked to take something from the game."