ASMIR BEGOVIC stressed that it was important for the players not to get too disheartened . . . after their 17-game unbeaten home run came to a crashing halt against Champions League holders Chelsea on Saturday.
Two Jonathan Walters own goals, a Frank Lampard penalty and a thunderous Eden Hazard strike inflicted a 4-0 defeat upon the Potters, condemning them to a first League loss at the Britannia Stadium in over eleven months.
However, despite the obvious disappointment of such a setback, the Bosnian international remains upbeat about the season so far, and has challenged his team-mates to bounce back in style over the next seven days.
“It was just one of those days today where everything went against us,” he told Stoke City Player. “It still hurts us though, because we are professionals and we care about the results that we pick up.
“All we can do now is dust ourselves down, get back to the drawing board and try to get things back up and running again with the games against Crystal Palace and Swansea City next week.
“It is hard to take because I don’t think we played too badly. Jon was hugely unfortunate with his own goals, there was a dubious penalty and Hazard hits a wonder goal from 30-yards.”
He added: “The atmosphere is obviously flat in the dressing room now, but we will lift ourselves again, just like we have done before, and we will come back better and stronger.”
Chelsea became the first side to depart the Britannia Stadium with maximum points since Republic of Ireland international James McClean secured Sunderland a narrow 1-0 victory last February.
The defeat brings an end to an incredible run of results for the Potters, something Begovic feels the players and supporters can be extremely proud of.
“It’s important for us to remember who we are,” he acknowledged. “We aren’t one of the big boys in the League, so we have to take pride in the fact that we have gone so long unbeaten here.
“It’s very unusual for any team to go almost twelve months without a defeat at home, let alone a Club like ourselves, who are looking to break into the top half of the table for the first time.
“We are proud of our record here, and now we will do everything we can to go on another run like this one. At the end of the day, it’s one defeat, and we won’t allow that to undo all of the hard work we have done over the last year or so.”