The Young Socceroos have suffered their first defeat at the AFF Under-19 Championships after going down to Thailand in Vietnam on Sunday night.
In a match between the last two unbeaten sides in Group B, Thailand proved too strong for the young Aussies as they prevailed 5-1.
Despite the defeat Ufuk Talay’s Australians should still progress to the semi-finals, needing only a draw in their final group match against Laos on Tuesday to advance.
“It’s obviously a disappointing result for our team but more importantly we are here to prepare for the AFC Championships and we are learning more about our players with each match we play,” Talay said.
“We still have one more group match against Laos in a couple of days then hopefully a semi and a final to continue to try and improve as a group.”
While Thailand is the defending champions at the tournament it was the Young Socceroos who made stronger start and took the lead inside 13 minutes.
Sydney FC youngster George Blackwood produced a solo effort with an excellent finish from inside the box past Thai keeper Chakorn Philaklong.
But Thailand equalised four minutes later through Sowarit Panthong before delivering a blow just before the break as Supachai Chaided nailed the first of his three goals on the night to make it 2-1 to the Thais.
Supachai doubled his tally on the hour mark before completing his treble eight minutes from time with a deft chip.
The scoring was completed in stoppage time as Thai striker Worachit Kanitsribumphen tapped into an empty net.