Dean Furman insists he will bounce back from relegation with Doncaster Rovers and he believes it will be “character-building” in the long-term.
Furman, 25, helped Rovers clinch promotion just 12 months ago but, with a season left on his contract, he is determined to help the club return to the Championship at the first time of asking next season.
"I've experienced the highs and lows of the game all in a year," said Furman who said he would “drown his sorrows" with his good friend Joe Jacobson, whose Shrewsbury Town team were also relegated this season.
"It's a bitter pill to swallow the way it all happened, but we can’t just look at one game as it comes down to our results over the course of the season. I hope it makes me stronger.
Capped by South Africa 18 times, Furman played for 84 minutes of the 1-0 defeat against champions Leicester City, with a penalty from David Nugent sending them down as nearest rivals Birmingham City earned a last-minute reprieve against Bolton.
"Our game-plan worked for 75 minutes. It was great to play against the champions and there was a terrific atmosphere at the ground. To hear that Birmingham had scored in the 93rd minute was really crushing."
Reflecting on his first full season in the Championship, midfielder Furman said: "We always knew it would be difficult. We’ve had a lot of injuries to key players, but it’s been enjoyable for me nonetheless — playing against some great players at some great grounds.
"It's given me a real taste and we’ll try to bounce straight back."