NEWCASTLE United’s Rob Elliot kept the score down at the St Mary’s Stadium - but the goalkeeper took no satisfaction from his saves.
The goalkeeper was superb in the club’s shocking 4-0 defeat to Southampton on Saturday.
Elliot, making his first Premier League appearance of the season in the absence through injury of Tim Krul, kept the home side at bay until the last minute of a fraught first half for Newcastle.
Jay Rodriguez broke the deadlock in the 45th minute, and he scored again in the second half. Rickie Lambert and Adam Lallana also found the net.
The 27-year-old was the only United player able to leave the pitch with his head held high.
Elliot threw his gloves into the away end after the final whistle.
The bulk of the club’s 2,187 travelling support booed the players off the field after what was arguably the team’s worst performance of the season by some distance.
While Elliot took the visiting team’s only plaudits, there was no pride in defeat for him, only “hurt”.
“I’m just hurting from the loss,” Elliot said.
“Maybe in a few days I’ll be able to sit down and look at the videos, and look back at the saves and be pleased, but when you lose 4-0, as a keeper you never feel good.
“We’ve got to get over it, get back to the training ground and make sure it doesn’t happen again.
Captain Fabricio Coloccini and his players headed towards the away end after the final whistle, but all bar Elliot and Davide Santon headed for the tunnel once they saw and heard the angry reaction to their performance.
“We went over the fans, and they weren’t happy,” said Elliot.
“The support we get is amazing everywhere we go.
“We do appreciate it. We know it’s not good enough. The fans had every right to be upset - there’s no excuses.
“We’ve got to win back their trust. We can’t defend it.
“There’s no dancing around it. We’ve got to hold our hands up. Southampton were excellent, and we didn’t turn up.
“We got beaten by a better team.
“Over the course of the season, we’d back ourselves, but we’ve got to hold our hands up to the fans and say that wasn’t good enough.
“I think there was 100 per cent given, but Southampton got on top of us.
“We never managed to get back into it. I think we’ve got to give them credit, but we still know it wasn’t good enough.”
Elliot will again be in goal on Saturday when Premier League champions Manchester United visit St James’s Park.
“We’ve got a week’s rest, and we’ll get into Man United,” he said. “We want to put it right.”