MO Elyounoussi didn’t shy away from admitting that Sunday’s thrashing given to them by Manchester City will be difficult to digest.

Saints found themselves 3-0 down after just 18 minutes as Pep Guardiola’s side eased their way to an emphatic 6-1 victory, which could have been more resounding if they took all their chances.

Elyounoussi came on as a second-half substitute in the drubbing and thinks his team need to get this loss out of their system as quickly as possible.

The midfielder said: “It’s a tough one to take but we have to learn from it and do better.

“We played against a good team who have a good record at home.

“We tried our best but after they scored an early goal it made it even harder, but credit to the guys who were really trying and working hard.

“I think we stood up and then after we scored the goal we were much better.

“We had a couple of chances and were much better at the beginning of the second-half and could have got at least two more goals.

“In general, Man City were the better side and we need to work harder this week because we have a really important game at home.

“That’s how it goes playing against a good team.”

No one gave Saints a chance heading into the match, but the manner of defeat must cause concern for Mark Hughes.

His side have just one win in 11 Premier League games this season and the defeat in Manchester now raised the pressure for this Saturday’s home tie against Watford.

The only solace Saints can take from the thrashing they received is that they broke their scoring duck.

They were on the verge of setting a new club record of six consecutive top-flight games without a goal.

But Danny Ings’ penalty in the first-half was enough to end their barren run in front of the opposition’s net.

Saints will get the chance on Saturday to make sure that they don’t make it one home win in a calendar year, which Elyounoussi believes should be enough motivation to pick themselves up.

Elyounoussi added: “It’s a mental thing.

“We want to forget about this game and start looking ahead to the next one to get in the right mindset.

“It shouldn’t be hard to pick ourselves up after this loss and everyone has to look inside themselves and pick themselves up in time for the next game.”