Liverpool U18 coach Mike Garrity insisted there's more to come from his side after they got off to a winning start in the Newark Liberty International Soccer Summit in New Jersey.
The young Reds recovered from an unusually sluggish first-half performance on Tuesday afternoon to beat Colombian side Fuddercol 2-0 at Lubetkin Field, NJIT.
A Nathan Burke penalty three minutes into the second half and a great strike from substitute Louis Robles four minutes from time were enough to earn all three points, but Garrity believes his players will get better as the tournament progresses.
"I thought the performance could have been a lot better," he told Liverpoolfc.com. "It was nice to get the result but when you travel this far for a tournament, the first game is never easy.
"The heat was difficult for the boys and the pitch was not the easiest to play on but overall we need to be happy that we took the points even if we know that we can play a lot better than that.
"What we don't want to do is give the lads any excuses, because if they want to make it, they'll need to get used to travelling long distances to games and playing in hot conditions like this. That's what the first-team players do and that's why these trips are so good because they help prepare the boys for what is hopefully to come.
"South American teams are usually quite physical so we told the boys to keep the ball as much as possible and at times we struggled to do that but hopefully as the week goes on, we'll improve on that part of our game.
"I thought as the game went on, we got better and I thought Ryan Kent influenced a lot of our attacking play while Dan Cleary was very solid at the back.
"Some of the boys have just come back from injury, so it was nice to get them back out there playing and now we'll brush ourselves down and get ready for the game against St Benedict's Prep on Wednesday evening."
Garrity's sentiments were echoed by team captain Burke after the game when he told the official website that he'd never played in such hot conditions.
"That was definitely the hottest I've ever been on a football pitch," he said. "We're obviously used to much cooler conditions in England but we had to adapt to it and I thought we did that in the second half.
"The first half was a struggle but I thought we became more composed in the second half and got the ball down on the ground and passed it much better.
"It was nice to score the penalty but it's about the team not me. Louis scored a fantastic goal at the end to make sure we got all three points and we were made up for him because he's working really hard."
Follow @LFCUSA on Twitter for live match updates during the U18 tournament in New Jersey.