José Fonte says that, while the side deserved more from today’s trip to Everton, there are lessons to be learned in defeat.
After falling behind to Seamus Coleman’s ninth-minute opener, Southampton fought back to draw level through Gastón Ramírez’s stunning goal on 71 minutes.
However, Everton recovered their lead through Romelu Lukaku almost immediately to consign Saints to a defeat when their performance looked to have warranted more.
“Everybody in the dressing room was very disappointed,” Fonte told Saints Player after the game. “We felt we deserved more than nothing because we played a very good game.
“But, from our point of view, they were two soft goals [Saints conceded]. In the first half they had one shot and scored one goal.
“We worked hard and got a well-deserved goal in the second half, and then conceded another soft goal straight afterwards.
“That’s not up to our standards, to be honest. We are a very good defensive team so we are going to look at it and make sure that those types of things don’t happen any more.
“We need to learn from this and gain more experience because this is costing us points.”
Saints end 2013 having taken only five points from a possible 21 during an injury-disrupted December.
January begins with the visit of high-flying Chelsea on New Year’s Day, which Fonte says is exactly the kind of game Saints need after the side’s recent run.
“We’ve been unlucky,” insisted the Portuguese defender. “There’ve been a couple of games where we should have done better and where we might have taken more points, like the Villa and Tottenham games, but they are gone now.
“We got a very good win at Cardiff, which is a hard place to go, and we could have got another three points today but unfortunately we couldn’t.
“We’re looking forward to the Chelsea game and to putting this behind us. It’s the best kind of game because it’s a big one that we all want to play in, so let’s test ourselves against them.
“We believe in ourselves and what we do, and we know we can compete against anyone in this division.
“We need to keep believing because this team is good enough to be in the top six, so we will fight and work hard for the points to come.”