Southampton boss Ronald Koeman rued his side’s luck after a 1-0 defeat to Danish champions Midtyjlland last night scuppered their hopes of reaching the Europa League group stages.
Former Celtic striker Morten Rasmussen scored the decisive goal shortly before the half-hour mark with an angled drive following an error by striker Jay Rodriguez who was caught in possession.
Skipper Jose Fonte saw an early effort cleared off the line but thereafter the Saints, who are yet to win a Premier League match this season, barely threatened to take the tie into extra-time.
“Unlucky. In both games we were the better team, we had the most chances,” said Koeman, who was leading Southampton’s first expedition into Europe since 2004. “We scored a goal at home that was disallowed and tonight we need a penalty for handball from the free-kick. Maybe it was the best performance until now, from our team. We worked hard but sometimes you need good decisions. We didn’t have that and that makes the result.”