Lokomotiv Moscow defender Benedikt Howedes described the "hurt" of losing on his return to Schalke after the Bundesliga side netted a stoppage-time winner in their Champions League clash on Tuesday.
Alessandro Schopf scored the decisive goal in the dying moments of the game to confirm Lokomotiv's elimination from all European competition this season.
The result left Lokomotiv with five defeats from their six Group D matches, including another 1-0 defeat to Schalke in Moscow - also settled by a late goal from Weston McKennie.
"You could compare tonight's loss with the first match in Moscow," said Howedes. "It was so similar. We defended well and Schalke didn't have many chances, but we lost both games because of two unlucky situations."
Howedes and fellow Schalke alumnus Jefferson Farfan were honoured with a pre-match presentation at the Veltins Arena to recognise their service to the club, with the Germany international given an especially warm reception.
"It was very emotional for me tonight," added Howedes, who came through the youth ranks at Schalke before leaving earlier this year. "Lots of friends sent me messages in the past week and wished me luck.
Was great to see you again, !Until next time! December 11, 2018
"I ordered a lot of tickets for this game and had a lot of friends in the stadium. For that reason, it's more than disappointing to have played and lost in this manner. It hurts.
"[The occasion] meant everything to me. I played for this club for 16 years. It's my heart and love. I spent all my energy and gave all my love to this club.
"This was perhaps the last time I will play in this stadium in front of this crowd. And when they celebrated me like this it goes deep inside my heart. A fantastic feeling."
Schalke boss Domenico Tedesco was pleased to bounce back from Saturday's Revierderby defeat against Borussia Dortmund with a battling victory.
"It's very important that we won tonight. For us. For our fans and for our confidence," he said. "It shows that we can stay true to our philosophy and still win games."
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