Mauricio Pochettino again used the competition to field his fringe stars, making ten changes to the team that drew 1-1 with Stoke in the Premier League for the fourth round clash at the Stadium of Light.
However, it didn’t pay off as Saints went out of the competition with a 2-1 defeat.
Perez, assistant manager to Pochettino, said: “We are a little bit disappointed to be out of the cup because it was an important competition for us to provide the minutes for our squad and our younger players.
“We like to use professional minutes of games for the younger players but in the end with the result we can change nothing.
“We think we deserved more from special situations we can manage but congratulations for Sunderland. They tried to win the game and they deserve obviously to be still in this competition.”
He added: “We have a squad and we need to use all players and give minutes in this type of games.
“The season is so long and the next couple of months there comes a very tough period of games and we need everyone in the best form because it will be important for the rest of the season.
“We are a little bit disappointed to miss important games like this but this is football and we have to look forward.”
It was a particularly disappointing evening for £12m man Gaston Ramirez who struggled to make an impact.
“He tried to do the best but it’s not easy for the players who are not playing every weekend,” said Perez.
“I think we are happy with his performance and the team as well.”
There were a few youngsters fielded again and Perez was keen to emphasise how important the competition is for them.
“They are learning a lot on every single training session but obviously it’s very important for players who are 17, 18 19-years-old to play in a stadium like this and in front of an opponent like Sunderland,” he reckoned.
“Sunderland at the moment is on the bottom of the Premier League but they have a very good squad and very good players and it was a tough game for the young players.
“They learned a lot from professional games and it will be good for the future.”
Source Daily Echo
Source: Saints Mad