Puel: It's hard to sum up

By SFC Media Thu 08 Dec Saints vs Be'er Sheva

Claude Puel admitted it was difficult to find the words to sum up the disappointment of Southampton's exit from the UEFA Europa League.

Saints were knocked out of the competition after a 1-1 draw with Hapoel Be'er Sheva, at St Mary's, meaning they did not make it out of the group stage.

Puel said: "It's a big disappointment tonight. It was a difficult game against a good opponent, who were always dangerous when they recovered the ball, but we had chances during the game.

"Just one mistake, one shot at the end – we lost the ball and it's a goal. It's very hard to accept this situation, and very hard of course for my players. It's a big disappointment for all the squad and the fans also.

"Tonight, all the words are difficult, but this is football. It's a big disappointment, because we gave it our all. It's very hard to be eliminated, but now it's important to have a good reaction from all the team."

To add to the frustration, Saints lost top scorer Charlie Austin to injury in the first half, with Puel adding: "He has an injury with his shoulder, and I don't know how long he will stay out, but for the moment he is injured."

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