The Joeys have been eliminated from the AFC U-16 Championships in India after a loss to Vietnam on Monday night.
Tony Vidmar’s team looked on track for a crucial three points after a brace from striker John Roberts had them leading 2-0 at the break.
But Vietnam stormed back in the second half, drawing level by the hour mark before Nguyen Duy Khiem scored five minutes from time completed a 3-2 win in Group B.
The Joeys took the lead on 18 minutes, as Roberts towered above the Vietnamese defenders to head in Louis D'Arrigo's in-swinging corner.
Roberts, the Joeys skipper, then doubled the lead 10 minutes later as he capitalised on a mishit back pass to round the keeper and sweep the ball into an empty net.
"We then lost two midfielders to injury [Adrian Viggiani and Fabian Monge], and they were players who were controlling the game for us and that was the turning point,” Vidmar conceded.
“Our shape went out the window, they scored one and then the second and third goal killed us off."
In the group’s other match, Japan crushed Kyrgyzstan 8-0 to ensure they will top the group and progress to the quarter-finals.
"We started off well, took control of the game, and got the goal we were looking for,” Vidmar added.
“But after that we panicked, turned the ball over a lot more. We looked nervous in defence, we didn't have the same intent and urgency to win the ball back.
“We got a lucky goal but panicked after that and maybe focused too much on the scoreline.”
The Joeys lost their opening group game 1-0 to Kyrgyzstan.
Their final group match is against Japan on Thursday afternoon.
Joeys' starting XI
Nicholas Suman (GK), Dylan Pierias, Joel King, Adrian Viggiani, John Roberts (c), Thomas Aquilina, Rahmat Akbari, Louis D’Arrigo, Mark Moric, Adrian Valenti, Fabian Monge
In-form Vukovic earns Genk contract extension
Caltex Socceroos goalkeeper Danny Vukovic has been rewarded for his excellent form with a two-season contract extension at Belgian club KRC Genk. The 33-year-old's deal was due to expire at the end of the campaign but the Pro League leaders have taken up their option to extend
Aussies Abroad: Vukovic’s Genk beaten in battle of Belgium’s top two
Danny Vukovic’s Genk remain well clear on top of the table despite falling to a rare defeat in Belgium against Club Brugge overnight. In a meeting of the competition’s top two at the Jan Breydel Stadion, Genk were beaten the fired-up home side, going down 3-1. There was lit
Aussies Abroad: Ryan’s Brighton through to Quarter-Finals while Milligan, Giannou pick up strong results
There were a handful of Caltex Socceroos in action on Sunday morning (AEDT) while some key figures were rested as their clubs negotiated cup ties. Firstly to Europe where Mark Milligan played a full 90 at the heart of Hibernian’s midfield as they welcomed new manager Danny Hec
Aussies Abroad: Luongo gallant in Watford defeat
Caltex Socceroos midfielder Massimo Luongo can turn his attention to the EFLChampionship after QPR crashed out of the FA Cup on Saturday morning (AEDT). The 26-year-old played the full 90 minutes in QPR’s 1-0 loss to Watford at Loftus Road, in a tight game where each side cou