Sydney FC youngster Marco Tilio couldn’t have asked for a better start to his international career, scoring a hat-trick on debut for the Young Socceroos at the AFF U-18 Championships.
Winning the Sky Blues’ Rising Star award in 2018, Tilio showcased all his club form against Vietnam as he reflected on a memorable first Young Socceroos camp.
“It was an incredible experience scoring a hat-trick on my national team debut,” he said.
“Coming over to Vietnam to play in the AFF tournament was exciting and having the chance to represent my country was a huge honour.
“Knowing I was coming up against some good opposition I really wanted to push myself to do well and show my quality on a national stage.
“Having scored a hat-trick and grabbing an assist in my first competitive game for my country I was really happy and couldn’t have asked for a better start.
“I was really happy scoring all three goals,” he continued.
“But the one that stood out to me would have to be the last one. Having picked up the ball in transition towards the end of the game and to create something a little special out of nothing I was ecstatic.
“Scoring that goal celebrating with the boys and fans I physically had goose bumps it was incredible.”
WATCH: Marco Tilio's hat-trick:
It’s been a whirlwind rise for the 17-year old, who’s progressed through Sydney FC’s youth set up, as he set his sights firmly on representing Sydney FC in the Hyundai A-League in the near future.
“My ambitions is to really keep working hard to be the best I can,” he said.
“Coming into the national team is exciting but having the goal to stay apart of this team and along this journey is important for me as a player.
“I really want to push myself to be a part of this team to qualify for the 2021 World Cup.
“Having the new A League season coming up I want to keep working hard with Sydney FC to get an opportunity to make my Hyundai A-League debut this season,” he continued.
“As a player I want to keep learning from the quality playing group around me at Sydney FC and that will benefit me to not only be the best possible player but best possible person too.”