Saints, to their credit, did not stop probing for a way back into the game and almost found it when Steven Davis‘ header dropped onto the top of the crossbar before Charlie Austin had a goal chalked off for offside.
“I think we played very well in the first half, but it’s difficult to play against this team when you concede a goal with the first action of the match,” Puel said.
“The first goal changed the profile of the game.
“In the second half we tried but after the second goal it was difficult to come back because my players were tired.
“It was difficult to find solutions. It’s disappointing because we tried to play good football. We can do better.”