There were two major talking points in the opening half at the Amex Stadium, with Andone being dismissed for a late challenge and Lewis Dunk having a goal ruled out by VAR, and Potter assessed his team’s display against their south-coast neighbours.
He said, “We started the game really well and had some opportunities, certainly pressure. They came into the game a little bit and the red card was always going to make it difficult for us.
“We got to half-time and had an idea about what we were going to do in the second half, and I thought we started well, had some attacking entries and won the ball back in good areas.
“But from one action they score and it becomes a little more difficult, especially when you’re down to ten men for so long.
“The players put in everything and I’m incredibly proud of them for the effort they put in and what they tried to do, but it wasn't our day today and that’s life sometimes.”
Albion played out the remaining two thirds of the game with ten men after Andone’s dismissal, and Potter had no complaints about the decision, but was delighted by his team’s endeavour to be positive with a numerical disadvantage.
“It didn’t look a great one, and of course when you look at it back, it isn’t,” he continued. “That’s not a tackle we want to see — of course he hasn’t meant to do it, but it’s not good or anything we can defend.
“It’s then an uphill battle, but the players’ attitude to the task was fantastic. They tried to win the game — we had some chances; but of course they did as well, which you would expect.
“Overall, I’m very disappointed to lose, but we’re still trying to learn a lot about ourselves and I’m very proud of the effort the boys put in.”
Defeat to Saints followed a draw against West Ham United and victory over Watford on the opening day of the campaign, and Potter showed his realism towards the season that lies ahead.
“It’s the start of this process together and they are going to be some bumps in the road along the way.
“It’s not always going to be plain sailing, but it’s how we react to these moments and situations.
“The guys on the pitch left everything out there and tried to be positive with ten men, but on a hot day, for an hour, it’s a tough task against a good Southampton team.”