LIVERPOOL midfielder Joe Allen hailed the ‘spirit’ of Brendan Rodgers' side as he admitted bowing out of the Europa League was a bitter pill to swallow.

The Reds £15million signing played his part in a gutsy fightback in last night's second leg against Zenit St Petersburg at Anfield.

Allen scored Liverpool's second goal as they rallied from 3-0 down on aggregate to make it 3-3. However, they couldn't score again and went out on the away goals rule.

“It's extremely disappointing. To win the second leg 3-1 and not go through is pretty hard to take,” Allen said.

“The scoreline showed how much effort we put into the game. With a bit of luck we would have got through.

“I don't think it was lost in the first leg. Of course losing 2-0 made it difficult for us but we still had a chance.

“After conceding an early goal tonight we showed tremendous spirit and determination to get ourselves into a position where we could have gone through.

“We couldn't have asked for any more from the fans. They made such a difference. When you've got support as strong as that in that kind of environment it really gives you a lift. It helped us to almost get there.

“It's hard to look at the positives at the moment but the intensity of our play, and the will and determination to get through was evident.

“There might not be a trophy to play for now but there's still plenty for us as a football club to play for. We need to get as high as we can in the Premier League.”