Development Squad coach Nick Haycock felt his West Ham United side had performed a whole lot better than the 5-0 scoreline against PSV Eindhoven suggested.
In the U21s' final pre-season outing, the Hammers were largely the architects of their own downfall, spurning a series of early chances before gifting PSV the opener at their Sportcomplex de Herdgang training base on Tuesday.
Once Amos Nasha's back-pass had slid beyond Sam Howes with 15 gone, Haycock's young men lost their way, with Olivier Rommens' deflected effort, Rai Vloet's spot-kick and a Moussa Sanoh breakaway goal leaving the Hammers four down at the break.
Menno Koch nodded home a fifth shortly after the hour and though the visitors ultimately had precious little to show for their efforts, Haycock thought the game could and should have been a much tighter affair.
He told West Ham TV: "It's a great game for us to play and a great learning experience for the boys. In the first 15 minutes, I think our game plan was working well, putting pressure on the ball high up the pitch and we took the ball off them three or four times. Arguably, we could have been two or three nil up in the first 15 minutes and we never looked in any real danger.
"If you look at the stats at the end of the game, I think they'd be an interesting read. Obviously the top line is the one that counts, but final third entries, penalty box entries, pass completion and so on, I think it would be a close contest.
"But the scoreline is what it is and the boys have to learn quickly from that. What we're trying to achieve with the players is to become a Premier League player. If you do make the mistakes that we did for the goals and then go under for a 15-20 minute spell, the game can get away from you and I think that's what happened."
Despite the severity of the scoreline, Haycock is still hopeful that his young charges will take plenty from the experience, not least that the devil is in the detail.
He continued: "It goes on the website as 5-0 but we know it wasn't a 5-0 game. The players have to realise that what's showing on the scoreline stems from the little details, the finer margins. The final cross getting into the right area, blocking the shot, not making the rash tackle for the penalty and not switching off for a set-play.
"Those little things, combined with the general way we played, with and without the ball, then we've got a decent side in there."
Under the circumstances, Haycock was particularly impressed with West Ham's second-half showing and was just disappointed that they were unable to make their pressure pay in front of goal.
"At half-time, it's a question of making adjustments, but tactically we didn't have to adjust anything. It was just a case of, 'can you replicate the 15 minutes we had at the start of the game' and I think we did that in the second half.
"There were spells throughout the game when we were on top and we just didn't quite get it over the line to get that goal to get us back in the game. We always felt that if we got one, there were more in us, but the final ball in the final third wasn't quite there on Tuesday."