Steve On Defeat

Steve Bywater admits to being devastated by the play-off loss to Crystal Palace on Saturday.

"I feel gutted; it is not life or death but it is important to get West Ham in the Premier League," he says.

"And it is going to be a tough few weeks before we get back to work; it means a lot to me and you can see it means everything to people."

Of Neil Shipperley's goal, he says:

"He has hit it and it has deflected off Tom; it bounced up and their man was in the right place at the right time.

"I was at full stretch and couldn't get to it and it just fell for them; when it went in, though, I thought we could still beat them.

"They did well, fair play to them, we weren't good enough on the day and the best team won.

"You have to take responsibility for your own job and if you do your job properly you win.

"We could definitely have done better - a lot better - but I don't know why it didn't happen.

"You don't want to come this far and lose - it is not the best feeling.

"But having been injured I just want to thank my lucky stars that I am fit enough to play and I want to get on with that next season.

"The fans were excellent and people have paid a lot of money even if they might not earn too much.

"It was silent in the dressing room afterwards and not much was being said - but life goes on.

"Alan Pardew has told us to remember how it feels - it is not a good feeling.

"We want the good players to stay but I don't know the financial implications.

"There are going to be a lot of good clubs coming down next year but hopefully we can be good enough."