Eamonn Fitzmaurice conceded that Kerry played second fiddle to Galway in a Super 8 encounter that failed abysmally to live up to expectations.
"It's as poor a performance as we've had," the manager admitted to the Irish Times after the Kingdom suffered their first championship defeat to the Tribesmen since 1965.
"We didn't turn up, from the off we looked to be a yard off the pace, but the better team won. Galway won all the battles and at the end David's (Clifford) goal put some respectability on the scoreboard, but we just weren't good enough.
"We were predictable up front, weren't dynamic or active the way we can be. It is disappointing, there's no getting away from it. But we knew it would be a huge jump from the Munster championship, we weren't getting carried away with that, same as we won't get carried away with this.
"I think the game will bring us on. We are well aware we're a work in progress. We are going in a direction but when you are doing that you can get caught and today we met a Galway team that were a bit more streetwise, further down the line, and deserved the win.
"They are big-time contenders but I wouldn't have needed today to confirm that."