Adelaide United Youth product Jai King-Byrne is hoping his experience with the Young Socceroos in Vietnam will leave him in good stead moving forward.
The midfielder was a part of the 23-player squad that clinched the 2019 AFF U-18 Youth Championship following a 1-0 win over Malaysia in the Final.
King featured in two of the five group games against Cambodia and Malaysia.
He said the three weeks away was a great learning experience but admitted he did miss home at some stages.
“At first it was good being in camp in Canberra and then going to Vietnam was good,” King said as the Young Socceroos won the tournament for a fifth time.
“But I guess it had its up and downs I guess. Being away from home was a bit a tough but overall it was a good experience.”
King also believed playing at a higher intensity than what he is used to in the local National Premier League (NPL) will only serve to improve his game.
“Obviously I take the experience back to playing club because the tempo is a lot higher in international football than in the NPL,” he added.
“So I’ll just take that back into United with the way we played.”
The 17-year-old joined the NPL Reserves side a few years ago and has continued to excel in the Club’s youth system.
He played five games with the Reserves, while amassing 13 appearances for the Young Reds under Paul Pezos this season.
King was now determined to become a regular in the Youth Team and aspire to reach the first team.
“I’ve had a couple of years in Reserves now and last season I was pretty involved with the Youth Team and this season as well,” he said.
“So obviously I just want to cement my spot in the Youth Team then eventually move up to the first team.”