Conor Townsend says the players were “absolutely devastated” in the away dressing room after full-time on Saturday evening.
Albion produced a brilliant performance at St Mary’s Stadium against a Southampton side who were relegated from the Premier League last season and one of the favourites to earn promotion.
Carlos Corberán’s team were in the ascendency and pushing for a winner with the scores at 1-1, however, Adam Armstrong struck at the other end of the pitch inside the final 12 minutes to deliver a cruel and undeserved blow to the Baggies, securing all three points for the hosts in the process.
It was just a second defeat in 11 matches for the visitors and Townsend admitted it was a showing which deserved so much more.
He said: “It was a tough one to take, obviously we had the chance with Darnell hitting the bar just before they score the second and if you’d said someone would have scored a winner you’d have said it would be us.
“When we were in the ascendency we played some really good stuff but obviously we’ve ended up conceding. Playing how we did you’re prone to giving up chances.
“I thought we limited them and obviously everyone’s absolutely devastated given the effort that we put in and the performance too.
“I think the fans appreciated it too, they stayed to the end and gave us a good clap and they can appreciate how hard we worked. Today, it just wasn’t meant to be.”
“In the first half we didn’t create too many chances but I thought it was a pretty even game, there wasn’t much in it.
“Obviously, coming to a place like St Mary’s is a difficult task, especially with the run of form they’re in, but we came here, the early goal was a bit of a kick to us, but we still played some alright stuff in the first half, it was just about doing more of the same and being more of a threat.
“I thought the attacking players in the team and the midfield gave us a real good outlet today and we created a lot of chances because of that. We’ve just got to try and take one or two more.
“The lads are really disappointed, but that shows how well we’ve played and come away with nothing.
“We’ll just take the positives, have a bit of a break now, come back and try and put today right.”
“We’ve lost every game ahead of an international break, that’s obviously not great but after them we’ve come out and got good results after both breaks previously so we’ve got to do that again.
“We’re in the middle of a really tough run of fixtures. Southampton are a good team, we got a good win against Hull and we could have had another one today.
“However, there are positives to take and we will take them. There are no easy games in the Championship, everyone can beat everyone, so we know all these games will be tough but with performances like that we can hopefully turn them into wins and we’ll be there or thereabouts.
“We’ve had a lot of injuries as well. The squad at one point was threadbare, and we still have Swifty to come back, Maja, Dike, Reachy as well. So we’ve got bodies to come back and I think some of them will be close come the Ipswich game or the week after and with them coming back it will be massive for us.
“They’ll give the squad a real boost. We believe in that squad in the dressing room and we believe in the manager too.
“We’ve seen a lot of good things this season, there are obviously things to improve on, but we are where we are and hopefully we can go on another run and push ourselves into those play-off places.”