Stoke boss Tony Pulis felt his side did themselves credit despite going down to a 3-0 defeat at Manchester City.
Robinho hit a hat-trick in an impressive victory for the hosts but the Potters played their part after the Brazilian star gave City a14th-minute lead.
Ricardo Fulller and Ryan Shawcross both had chances to equalise before Stoke succumbed in the second half as the Blues played some scintillating football.
Robinho claimed his second just two minutes after the restart before clinching victory 18 minutes from time.
"We were desperately disappointed to come in 1-0 down at half-time," said Pulis on Sky Sports.
"They scored the goal and Thomas Sorensen made a good save to tip one over the bar, but apart from that, I thought we had the better chances.
"To concede the second goal just after half-time was really a killer. We got caught cold and it was a poor goal to concede just two minutes into the second half.
"But the players kept going and kept going, and when you're chasing it against teams who've got the quality and pace that City have, you leave yourself open.
"They broke four or five times and could have scored goals on the break but up until that point we were well in the game."
Pulis left out record signing Dave Kitson to bring back top scorer Fuller and could make further changes for Wednesday's home game against Sunderland.
But the Potters boss believes they can go into that game with plenty of positives from their Eastlands defeat.
"There's one or two things we'll have to sort out, especially defensively," Pulis said.
"We've got to take a lot of good out of the game in respect of the chances we created.
"I thought we coped well up until the second goal, and even at the end their keeper made some great saves.
"We've got a three-game week," he added. "Our forwards work very hard so we'll mix and match over these three games."