Wales boss John Toshack looked ahead to next month's World Cup crunch with Russia by insisting that his young side will be much stronger by then.
Wales lost 2-1 against a talented Montenegro outfit on Wednesday night, and although substitute Sam Vokes' header pulled them back into the game, the Welsh players did not have the power and running needed to force a draw.
Toshack said: "This is a bad time of the year, a lot of the lads are lacking match practice and fitness. But by the time the Russia game comes around, we will be much stronger."
He added: "What I want to see now is these young players to push on at their clubs, get into their first teams and have a lot more game time before we play Russia."
Toshack conceded that his team were beaten by the better side, but refused to be critical of Danny Gabbidon, playing his first international since November 2007.
The West Ham man, who has only played one full match for his club in pre-season, conceded a first-half penalty and then was culpable for Montenegro's second goal.
Those two strikes, Stevan Jovetic's spot-kick and Radomir Dalovic turn and shot past Wayne Hennessey second from half-time, put the hosts in full control.
Vokes pulled one back with a clever header after the break, but Toshack said: "The lads did well to get back into the game, but after we scored they just did not take it on and produce more
"It was very, very hot out there and a lot of the boys have not played much football yet. So it was tough.
"But those two goals near the end of the first half changed the game, it was very hard to come back after that."
Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.
Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: https://www.givemesport.com/writeforgms