Joe Allen looking for response after Liverpool's collapse at St Mary's
Published 21/03/2016 | 13:06
Joe Allen insists Liverpool must learn their lesson after they let a two-goal lead slip to lose at Southampton on Sunday.
The two clubs both remain hopeful of qualifying for Europe and were neck and neck in the Barclays Premier League heading into a memorable contest at St Mary's.
Having been lucky to escape conceding an early penalty, Liverpool dominated the first half and Philippe Coutinho and Daniel Sturridge scored within five minutes of each other.
But Ronald Koeman reacted by introducing Sadio Mane and Victor Wanyama at the interval and, after seeing his 49th-minute penalty saved, Mane hit a brace either side of a fine Graziano Pelle strike to seal a memorable 3-2 win.
Wales midfielder Allen had come close to adding a third on two occasions, seeing a good chance saved by Fraser Forster before having another strike ruled out for offside.
Jurgen Klopp's Reds had won their last three league games heading into the contest but - after being well on top in the first half - Allen had no explanation for the second-half capitulation.
"I don't quite know. I don't know what to say really, but we are all very disappointed," he told liverpoolfc.com.
"To be ahead like that and then throw it away is hugely disappointing.
"Our focus has been on the run, gaining that momentum and I thought for large spells it looked like we would keep that going, but to come away with nothing... we can't look beyond that at the moment.
"We'll make sure lessons are learned and for the rest of the season we'll have to get that ball rolling and get some wins again."
Both Klopp and Koeman admitted Liverpool had bossed the first half but that the second had belonged to the hosts - who moved up to seventh with the win and are now three points off fifth-placed West Ham.
Ahead of his 53rd birthday on Monday, Koeman streamed down the touchline to celebrate with Mane and his team-mates after his late winning goal - which came just three minutes after Pelle's superb leveller.
Fellow half-time substitute Wanyama may not have grabbed the headlines but he did add some much-needed steel to the Saints midfield, and the Kenya international insisted the team always believed they could get something even at 2-0 down.
"I was thinking we still had a chance," he said.
"I know the team never gives up and I went in there knowing we could do something and still believing we could get something from the game.
"It was a tough game. Liverpool is a really good team and the result was fantastic. I think the whole team played really well."
After seeing off fellow European hopefuls Stoke the weekend before this miraculous comeback, Saints have now won seven of their last 11 Premier League games - with Wanyama looking to keep the run going.
"We really needed to win - we showed great character and we have done well today and managed to get three points," he added.
"It is important that we keep on getting the points on the board because the standings are a bit tight, but you never know because if you get points like this then who knows where you could end up? I'm happy for the team and for everyone."