Paul Lambert spoke of the sore feeling at going out of the FA Cup at the third round stage to Sheff Utd.
Lambert was gutted to see his side defeated 2-1 by Utd in B6.
Despite the press coverage on the eve of the game, boss Lambert said his team selection demonstrated his determination to get through the round.
But he accepted that the players didn't show the necessary creativity to blunt the Blades.
He said: "It was bitterly disappointing after a really good win on Wednesday.
"To get knocked out was really frustrating. It hurts. Anyone who knows me will tell you I'm not the happiest person when we lose.
"We picked a really strong side to try and get through.
"I never demeaned the competition one bit. I respect the history of the competition and what the competition is about.
"If you look at my own career, I have won some nice things through cup competitions.
"The journalist himself says he regrets asking the question because of what has happened with people's reactions. I think the whole context of the interview, there was never any way I was decrying the competition at all.
"You want to try and do a good run. If you look at the League Cup last time, we picked strong teams throughout the competition. I never take them lightly.
"I said in the same interview that if you're in something, you try to win it.
"It's the same with every game you play. Every match you try to be as competitive as you can.
"The lads will be hurting. They have gone from the good feeling of Wednesday to the disappointment of being knocked out.
"It's the same with the fans. They had the good journey back from Sunderland and now it's back down again.
"In terms of the game itself, we had a lot of the ball and that seems to be a problem here, for some strange reason.
"On Wednesday it was totally different. We looked a threat every time.
"Maybe at home teams are sitting in against us and making it hard.
"We need that creativity. It's just not there at the moment. But away from home, it seems to be different.
"You couldn't fault the lads effort and endeavour. What you do fault is that we made the wrong decisions at the wrong times.
"We lost a poor goal, the first with a deflection, and with the second the lad has hit a good strike.
"You give Sheff Utd credit for going through. But that team I picked was, in my view, strong enough to win."
Lambert revealed that Nathan Baker felt his hamstring and was withdrawn from the team in the warm-up pre-match while Gabby Agbonlahor also missed out on the eve of the match with the same issue.