Preston North End boss Alex Neil felt his side did more than enough to progress in the Carabao Cup after their penalty shoot-out defeat to Middlesbrough.
The Lilywhites saw Callum Robinson and Graham Burke miss from the spot as Boro prevailed 4-3 to reach round four after an end-to-end game had finished 2-2.
PNE led twice through Robinson and Tom Barkhuizen only for Ashley Fletcher and Marcus Tavernier to quickly respond for Boro.
Neil was pleased with the performance overall and hopes it can help his side pull clear of the wrong end of the Championship.
“I thought we played well tonight,” he said.
“You can always tell with your players. When they came off they were disappointed that we’re out of the cup but they’re pleased with how they played.
“We created more than enough chances to win the game. It’s just a case of trying to take those opportunities.
“The most disappointing thing is that we went ahead twice and then got pegged back.
“The second goal from them to be fair is a very good goal in terms of the lad’s finish.
“Hopefully we can take the second half performance at Sheffield United and tonight’s performance and try and build on it again on Saturday against West Brom.”