Canberra United were given a rough initiation to the Foxtel National Youth League on Sunday as they went down 8-0 to the Western Sydney Wanderers at Marconi Stadium.
Abraham Mahjok's hat-trick went a long way in helping the hosts romp to the final scoreline as he delivered an assist, around goals from Mohamed Adam, Oliver Puflett, Fabian Monje and Moudi Najjar.
Wanderers struck early through Adam as he got on the end of Mahjok's cross to score after nine minutes, but the game evened out for a while afterwards.
Daniel Fabrizio had United's first effort which was saved well, before desperate defence up the other end saw a Wanderers effort cleared off the line.
Wanderers scored again just before the half to double the advantage, before the second half opened up as the hosts piled on six goals.
United Head Coach Ryan Grogan said after the match that the opening match was a tough experience, but one that the side could learn a lot from moving forward.
"It was a tough introduction to the competition against an extremely talented Wanderers side," he said.
"At this level there is always a good chance you are going to get hurt when you make mistakes and full credit to the Wanderers, they had an abundance of classy players that punished us with the scoreline reflecting that."
"It is a huge learning curve but with a result like this comes an opportunity to improve and grow and we're not going to sit back and feel sorry for ourselves.
"It wasn't an ideal start however the bar has now been set. The boys have gained valuable experience and now know what the standard is in this league.
"The technical staff and myself will sit down and analyse the game and start building towards our next game against the Jets in a fortnight's time."
The side has a bye next weekend before facing the Jets in Newcastle in Round 3. The first home match for the side is at the AIS on Saturday 9th December against the Central Coast Mariners.
Western Sydney Wanderers 8 (Mohamed Adam 9’ Oliver Puflett 41’ 56’ Abraham Majok 53’ 88’ 92’ Fabian Monge 67’ Moudi Najjar 80’)
Canberra United 0