Ryan Ledson admitted Everton Under-18s were disappointed to exit the FA Youth Cup on Wednesday evening, with the midfielder among several in the squad to miss out on their final chance of clinching the trophy.
The young Blues drew 1-1 with Southampton in the fourth round at Goodison, with the tie eventually reaching penalties and a sudden-death victory for the visitors.
And after featuring for the Under-18s in three Youth Cup campaigns, Ledson admits it was an agonising way to lose after having high hopes of success this term.
"They've had two shots on target and it feels like we must have had nearly 30 in total," the 17-year-old said.
"It just hasn't fallen for us and we didn’t have that killer instinct in the box. It wasn't our day today.
"The dressing room was very disappointed. We've got a strong squad and I think we could have gone quite far but it's the luck of the cup. Southampton were solid and did well to get their goal. Penalties is a lottery and they came out on top in that."
Having been a regular for the Under-21s this season and after a first-team debut against Krasnodar in December, Ledson is among a talented crop able to float between Everton's senior and youth teams.
And while staying grounded in his own development, the England Under-18s skipper knows he now has invaluable knowledge to share with his teenage colleagues.
He added: "I've been trying to pass on the experience I gained from that night against Krasnodar to the other lads my age and explain how the gaffer wants us to be playing.
"It was a great occasion for me having been at the Club since the age of five. The players and manager were brilliant with me and if I keep working hard, hopefully there'll be more to come."