By Paul Brown
Paul Lambert spoke of his immense pride at the performance of his team despite the 3-2 defeat to Manchester United.
Lambert thought his side were outstanding as they more than matched the Red Devils for much of the ninety minutes.
He was impressed by the way they gave it absolutely everything in what was almost a famous victory.
He said: "I am proud. I thought they were outstanding. I couldn't ask for anymore.
"But that's why Manchester United are a top side. They do it week in week out.
"I am really proud with what they have given me.
"I think we have been playing well for a couple of weeks, hopefully the confidence will be there in abundance after that.
"The Premier League is really tough. They are a young side but they are playing really well at the minute.
"They kept on going. I couldn't fault them for the way the lads played and kept going.
"The crowd are your gauge. I am absolutely gutted to lose because they gave me everything they had."
Lambert hailed the two-goal salvo from Andreas Weimann and the strength and power of Christian Benteke in bossing Rio Ferdinand and Chris Smalling for much of the game.
He also praised Enda Stevens, who performed admirably in his first senior start.
He added: "One thing about Andreas is he's a natural finisher.
"Benteke was incredible for the build-up. He was outstanding.
"But Andi is a goalscorer. He's a young lad. He seems to have been around for years. The future is very good.
"Enda was terrific. He was up against Valencia who was by no means a slouch. Enda gave me absolutely everything, as they all did.
"I think Westwood and Bannan are playing well too. They are young lads but they are getting better.
"The front three are a handful. They are three young lads. But it bodes well for future."
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