SOUTHEND United centre-back Luke Prosser urged his team-mates to hold their heads high despite suffering a 2-0 defeat at Plymouth Argyle on Saturday.
The Shrimpers were forced to play 75 minutes of the match with only 10 men after Cian Bolger was dismissed early on.
But Prosser was proud of how the Blues battled in testing circumstances.
“Everyone was gutted in the dressing room after the game but we need to hold our heads high because we battled well and gave everything we could,” said the defender.
“We played them off the park in the first half and it was them who looked like they had 10 men.
“Everyone played really well and stuck to their jobs but, unfortunately in the second half they put an extra man in midfield which didn't help us.
“However, I still didn't think we looked like we were going to concede.”
Blues were eventually undone by goals from Lewis Alessandra and Reuben Reid.
And Prosser felt frustrated not to have kept the Pilgrims at bay.
“They were two sloppy goals we gave away in the end,” said the 26-year-old.
“We defend with seven or eight men in training all week so we know how good we are at doing it but today wasn't our day.
“We didn't get the penalty which we all thought was a stonewall one and the referee has made it hard for us.”
However, Prosser had no complaints about the dismissal of his defensive partner Bolger.
The Irishman was sent off after just 15 minutes for two fouls on Marvin Morgan.
And Prosser felt it was the correct decision.
“It was unfortunate but to be honest they did look like yellow cards,” said Prosser.
“I think the ref let him off the one before but it was just one of those things but I felt we went on to do ourselves proud out there.”
However, Blues were unable to avoid defeat and have now triumphed just once in their last five games.
But Prosser feels it will not be long until the Shrimpers get back to winning ways.
“We're knocking at the door,” said the centre-back.
“We've been playing really well and we've been creating chances too.
“Some of the boys have been unlucky but hopefully tomorrow at AFC Wimbledon in the JPT and against Oxford on Saturday the chances will turn in to goals.
“We're playing good football and it's only a matter of time before things go our way. “