Joe Allen admitted that Liverpool players were "bitterly disappointed" following their defeat by Swansea on Wednesday, but called on his teammates to bounce back instantly by claiming three points against Newcastle this weekend.
The Reds' defence of their League Cup trophy was halted after losing 3-1 to Allen's former club at Anfield and the midfielder could not hide his anguish following the fourth-round clash.
"We're bitterly disappointed," the 22-year-old told Liverpoolfc.com. "To go into the game as holders of this competition, we were hungry and determined to get into the next round. It obviously wasn't meant to be."
A header from Chico Flores and a tap-in for Nathan Dyer had given the visitors a healthy advantage before half-time substitute Luis Suarez reduced the Reds' arrears.
But a stoppage-time Jonathan de Guzman goal ended any hopes of a comeback for the home team at a time when Allen believed a late equaliser was a genuine possibility.
"It almost took us to go two goals down before we really kicked into gear," explained the former Swans midfielder, who followed Brendan Rodgers to Merseyside during the summer.
"It's a shame — I think if there were a few minutes left at the end, it looked like we probably would have gone on to get that second goal and force extra time.
"But time ran out and we had a few chances which we couldn't unfortunately put away."
Allen revealed it was "very strange, obviously bittersweet" to take on his old club, but echoed his manager's pre-match assurances that victory was the only thing that mattered on the night.
"It was great to line up alongside some top friends I've got at Swansea," he said. "But it's a game I desperately wanted to win for Liverpool and it's very disappointing not to have done that."
Focus for Allen and his colleagues now turns to a Sunday afternoon showdown against Newcastle and the No. 24 wants the Reds to further extend their four-match unbeaten run in the Barclays Premier League.
"It's easy to say after getting knocked out of the cup but the league is every team's priority and it's no different for us," Allen concluded.
"It's another big game at home at Anfield and one that we'll be looking to bounce back in with all three points."
Photo via LiverpoolFC.com
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