Mercedes arrived at Monza confident it could strike back in the 2021 title race by winning the Italian Grand Prix, but it came away from the weekend with fewer points than hoped and only one car on the podium in Sunday’s race.

The weekend started off well as Valtteri Bottas headed a Mercedes 1-2 in Friday qualifying, only for Lewis Hamilton to slip back to fifth in the second-ever Sprint on Saturday following a poor getaway.

Hamilton went on to suffer a race-ending crash with title rival Max Verstappen, while Bottas brilliantly recovered to complete the podium in third after being consigned to a back-of-the-grid start following an engine change.

"I think the sense that we’re going to leave here with and reflect on though is we had a car that should have been first and second here and we haven’t scored that many points,” Shovlin said. “So I think we need to be pretty critical with ourselves.

“With Valtteri we denied him the opportunity to win the race. He’s done a brilliant job all weekend and starting from the back, to get through to third was impressive.

“And then even with Lewis, there were certainly things we could have improved, the start on the Sprint qualifying cost him quite dearly so you know as is often the case, we walk away from here with a job list of things we’ve got to get better at because we can do better than we’ve done recently.”

Despite having an overwhelming sense of frustration, Shovlin praised Bottas’ performance as his best of the year after the Finn dominated Sprint Qualifying and turned in an impressive fightback in the grand prix.

"He’s done brilliantly,” Shovlin said. “Very impressive in the qualifying, he had a tricky morning session but really got it together with a really solid qualifying.

“You know today in the race, Valtteri has often found it harder than Lewis to get through the traffic and today he overtook more than anyone, just kept attacking and attacking and kept the tyres in good shape, yeah for us, we’re super proud of the job that he’s done.”

Asked what the issue was on the power unit on Bottas’ car, Shovlin replied: “We’ve sent that back anyway now, but there was an issue with the pneumatics side.

“You can keep persevering with it but if you don’t fix it you end up with a problem in qualifying and that’s why we took the decision to fix it.

“But will be a few days before we know what’s gone on with that because we’ll send it back to Brixworth and they’ll look at everything where there’s no time pressure.”