James Ward-Prowse was left disappointed by a late decision that cost Southampton all three points in a 2-2 draw at Watford in the Premier League.
Ward-Prowse’s first-half double looked to have set Saints on their way, but the hosts fought back and levelled at the death with a controversial Abdoulaye Doucoure strike, which struck a hand.
“At first it didn’t look like handball. From my position it’s hard to see his right arm but having seen it again in the changing room it’s clear,” Ward-Prowse reflected.
“It’s frustrating because having dug in deep late on in the game and a refereeing decision cost us, that’s disappointing.
“There’s been a lot of talk about the VAR system this week and whether that is something that can help eradicate those sort of things we’ll have to wait and see.
“We can’t change that now. We started the game very well and the second-half didn’t match the first that we had.”
A superb first-half display was juxtaposed by the second, where Watford applied pressure to get back into the contest, something which Ward-Prowse says must be addressed.
He said: “We should have put the game to bed. The second-half has not been great for us lately, it’s been a bit of a trend and we have to put that right very quickly.”
“We have to change our mentality from protecting what we’ve got to improving on what we’ve got. That comes with confidence but it needs to be addressed quickly as it’s cost us in the last few games.
“These are the times you have to stick together. We played some good stuff today but equally we did some bad things and we have to work on that.
“When things are going badly we have to show our character and desire to win a game and I think we did that right up until the last minute.”