James Ward-Prowse admits the second-half of Saturday’s Premier League clash with Norwich is what ultimately cost them at Carrow Road.
Saints took the lead over the hosts after just three minutes thanks to a Ché Adams strike but it didn’t take long for Norwich to find a response and level the score.
Captain Grant Hanley secured all three points for Dean Smith’s side as he headed in a late winner to see the Canaries move off the bottom of the Premier League standings.
“I think the second half [let us down]," admitted saints captain. "I think we stopped what we did in the first half.
“We knew there would be a real buzz around the place with the new manager coming in and I think we did well to get over that initial buzz.
“We conceded a sloppy goal but we were still in the game. Second half we came out and I feel as though we stopped doing what we did it in the first half and that was being brave on the ball, slick passing, creating chances and it felt completely different.
“When you come up against teams like Norwich who are struggling at the moment, they are going to be battling away.
“I think we got outfought a bit in the second half and we can’t accept that and that’s on us.
“Coming off from a game where you got outplayed then fair enough but to lose a game in the way that we did, particularly in the second half, that hurts us a lot.”
Ward-Prowse then reflected on the goal-scoring tallies of Saints’ strikers in recent weeks, particularly that of Ché Adams who has been scoring for both club and country.
“That’s what they’re there to do. They’ve been great for us in recent weeks and it’s up to us to provide them chances and to give them the platform to go on and score.
“I think we need to defend better from there, try and stop the cross, mark in the box and obviously we’re disappointed to concede a set piece. It’s not a nice way to lose the game.
“It’s about being clinical. I think we created enough chances within the game to be three or four nil up at half time.
“Our mentality and being outfought cost us today. The challenge for us now I think is to, particularly in the first half where we do play well, kill the game off inside the first half if we can.”