Development Squad boss Nick Haycock strives for the very best and while his West Ham United side put four past AFC Hornchurch on Saturday, he insists there remains plenty of room for improvement.
Having twice fallen behind at the Hornchurch Stadium, goals from the returning Dylan Tombides, Blair Turgott, George Moncur and Paul McCallum eventually saw the Hammers to a comfortable 4-2 success.
Victory, however, was the very least that Haycock expected, with a greater emphasis on the manner in which his young charges went about their business.
He told West Ham TV: "For the boys, it's almost a no-win situation because we're expected to win the game, regardless of what side we put. There were no first-team players obviously, but we put out a healthy squad.
"We try to get the ball down and play. They've kept the grass long for their first game of the season and we didn't really play with the tempo that we did against Southend the other night. I warned the boys before the game. I explained you've got to make this a game that's played at a tempo, so that you take your higher fitness and technical levels to a place where you're producing chance after chance.
"I think the disappointment was that the two goals we conceded were sloppy. All pre-season we've played some good stuff. You can see the type of football that we try to play and we've created chances, but equally we've given some sloppy goals away. That's why they're in the Development Squad, because they're developing players. There are still some youngsters in there and there were some pleasing performances as well."
None more so than that of Tombides, who marked his first start in some two years with an expertly-taken goal. Though the Australian has had to contend with testicular cancer over the past couple of years, he needed just 12 minutes to get his name on the score-sheet here.
Haycock continued: "It's great to have Dylan back in the fold and I think he's a talent. A great kid and he's a good addition to the Club never mind the group."
Tombides' header was the first of the Hammers' four goals on the day, as the hosts struggled to contain the visitors' attacking flair. Having failed to find the back of the net at Southend, the goals came as some relief to the men in claret and blue, though Haycock thought it should have been more emphatic.
"We could have scored more than four goals, there are no two ways about it. We can't afford not to convert chances. As you go up the levels you don't get as many chances and equally, if you make silly mistakes you get punished. I know it's a cliché in football, but it's the truth. The higher you go, you play against better quality players and they pounce on your mistakes. Even at the level here, it happened. It's a case of getting back on the training field and making sure they try to right the wrongs."
But no matter of the outcome on Saturday, Haycock was rightly thrilled to be able to bring a West Ham XI to the Ryman Premier side, fully aware of the value of such an occasion.
"We're doing our bit for our local neighbours, it's a terrific club and it always has been. It's always a pleasure to come over here and help out a local club. There were a lot of West Ham fans in the Hornchurch crowd as well!"