Liverpool defender Daniel Agger has admitted they were not good enough for the first hour of their FA Cup final defeat to Chelsea at Wembley.
The Reds did not seem to come alive until Andy Carroll's introduction in the 55th minute but by then they were 2-0 down. The former Newcastle front man pulled one back the Merseysiders and was denied an equaliser late on by a great save from Petr Cech, with television replays inconclusive over whether the ball crossed the line before the Czech clawed it away.
"We can't use that (fightback) for much. It simply was not good enough for the first hour and we can only blame ourselves," said the Denmark defender.
"Andy did really well when he came on and got a lot of balls to work with but sadly it was not enough."
Debate continued long after the final whistle over whether Carroll's header had actually crossed the line, but Agger said he had no idea from his position on the pitch.
"I definitely couldn't see anything because I was at the other end so people watching television will have to decide that," he said.
Midfielder Jordan Henderson admitted he went up claiming the equalising goal more in hope than expectation.
"I appealed because that is what you have got to do," said the England Under-21 midfielder, who was at a loss to explain Liverpool's sluggish start.
"I am not sure why we started quite slowly in the first half. In the second half we came out and played some good stuff and we should have got back into the game.
"I think we will be disappointed when we look back."