Tigers stars were apologetic after the nerve-wrecking home defeat on Tuesday, but delighted to reach Wembley.
Hull City's passage into the Championship play-off final should have been an easy ride after they stunned Derby County with a 3-0 away victory in the semi-final first leg on Saturday.
However, it proved to be anything but, as two goals from the Rams inside the first 36 minutes at the KC Stadium in Tuesday night's return leg saw the Tigers ultimately clinging on to the advantage.
Steve Bruce's side looked a completely different team to the won which had won so convincingly at the iPro Stadium just three days earlier and went from a comfortably holding a commanding lead at the halfway point of the tie to something resembling a shivering wreck in the second half in front of their own fans.
Derby, the only team to win a Championship match at Hull during the regular season, took the lead after just seven minutes of the return match through Johnny Russell.
Andrew Robertson, whose last-gasp third goal on the counter-attack in the first leg proved to be the decisive strike, then inadvertently turned into his own net as Hull's commanding position crumbled.
However, a second-half onslaught from the Rams, Steve Bruce's side held on to book a meeting with Yorkshire rivals Sheffield Wednesday at Wembley and remain on course to return to the Premier League after just a single season in the Championship.
After the match, many of the Hull players took to Twitter to react to the performance and result, and midfielder Tom Huddlestone was the first to admit that the second leg performance was simply not good enough.
Couldn't have made it much harder for ourselves. Bad performance all round but we managed to get to Wembley in the end.— Tom Huddlestone (@Huddz8) May 17, 2016
The target of promotion is still alive and kicking though. See you at Wembley ✌️— Tom Huddlestone (@Huddz8) May 17, 2016
Robertson and defender Curtis Davies echoed Huddlestone's sentiments, with the former of the two defensive stars reminding supporters of the moment which ended up winning the tie for the Tigers.
Mentally the toughest game I've ever played in. Delighted to get over the line,need to use 2day to learn from mistakes before Wembley #HCAFC— Curtis Davies #6 (@TheCurtisDavies) May 17, 2016
Can only apologise for that performance tonight, simply not good enough! But we done the job in the end! See you at Wembley people ✌— andrew robertson (@andrewrobertso5) May 17, 2016
Enjoyed this one much more I'll tell you that for free https://t.co/a7p3fs1kcK— andrew robertson (@andrewrobertso5) May 17, 2016
After tweeting about the mental difficulty of playing in such an intense game, Davies also admitted that he felt less than fresh the following morning.
Meanwhile, David Meyler and Alex Bruce took the opportunity to praise Derby's spirited fightback in the second leg.
We got there in the end, well done to the Derby lads they pushed us to the end, see ya's at Wembley ⚽ ️— Alex Bruce (@AlexBruce84) May 17, 2016
Tough game tonight. Fair play to Derby gave it everything they had. One last big push to achieve our target of promotion. #DareToDream— David Meyler (@DavidMeyler7) May 17, 2016
Now though, it is time for the Tigers to put the poor second-leg showing behind them, and look ahead to the lucrative all-or-nothing meeting with the Owls on Saturday.
— Greg Luer (@luergreg) May 17, 2016
Wembley bound— Chuba Akpom (@cakpom) May 17, 2016
Wembley— Ahmed Elmohamady (@Elmo_27) May 17, 2016
See you all at Wembley— Robert snodgrass (@robsnodgrass7) May 17, 2016