Socceroos debutant Jamie Maclaren says England's big defenders literally left their mark on him.
The Brisbane Roar striker made his Australian debut on one of the biggest stages as England defeated the Socceroos 2-1 on Friday in Sunderland.
Maclaren had half a chance to open the scoring in just the second minute, while by the time he was subbed off in the second half, the forward got a taste of what it's like in the Premier League.
At the Stadium of Light, Maclaren was marked by England's rising stars in defence: Everton's John Stones and Chris Smalling of Manchester United.
"I learnt how to test yourself against the best defenders," the 22-year-old said after the game.
"I've a few cuts and bruises off Chris Smalling and Stones, and that shows the intensity and the level they play.
"Some of them are quite bigger but at the end of the day they are just humans."
|COMMENT: Socceroos promising but still need work|
|Postecoglou proud despite loss|
|REPORT: England 2-1 Australia|
Maclaren charged down an attempted clearance by England goalkeeper Fraser Forster early in the match, but the gloveman recovered to gather the ball and launch a counter-attack that saw the home side score.
Later in the first half, a cross from Brad Smith was headed in Maclaren's direction before Stones intervened - and that was as good as it got for the Australian forward.
Socceroos coach Ange Postecoglou said he was happy with both his debutants' performances - Maclaren and defender Milos Degenek, who was a second-half substitute.
"They both acquitted themselves well. Obviously for Jamie it was a massive week and we didn't have massive expectations. He's a young guy and his first international game against high quality opponents," Postecoglou said.
"He worked hard and got into some good areas. Overall I was pleased and Milos added something when he came on."
Maclaren added recently that bulking up is one area he'll be looking at ahead of next season to add to his pace and ability to play off defenders' shoulders.
"The result is irrelevant," the striker added.
"We played really well in the first half. We had most of the possession and some good chances.
"It's a good run for us and we showed them we can match them.
"It's great to put the Aussie jersey on again. You could not have asked for a better debut and it’s a privilege to wear the Aussie jersey."