Australia boss Ange Postecoglou said his side had played with the "right intent" at the World Cup despite ending their campaign without a point.
The Socceroos concluded their tournament with a 3-0 defeat to Spain on Monday but, while that marked a third straight defeat for his side, Postecoglou insisted he was not disappointed.
"Not for me," he said. "I think we've shined in this tournament with the right intent. We have been positive and backed ourselves and pushed some of the best countries in the world. We are not a top 15 nation right now -- we have to try to push and bridge that gap. I think people in Australia were supportive of our efforts."
He did acknowledge that the heavy loss to Spain was "a disappointing way for us to finish a tournament," though, and added: "We just looked a little bit tired. That particular time we really struggled. For a lot of these guys, this has been a massive effort -- three massive games -- but that is the level we have to reach."
Group B had always appeared daunting for a side ranked lowest in the tournament but Postecoglou had hoped his players could have emerged with a better record.
"We haven't got the results that we wanted to when we came here," he said. "We came with the intent of making an impact and having the results. We wanted to measure ourselves against the very best so we know where we are at."
On the progress his side has made in Brazil, he added: "I think some of it is just the experience for these players in this tournament. A lapse in concentration will cost you a goal -- our players learned that and, until you go through that, we need to keep giving these boys opportunities and exposing them to this level of football.
"More than anything that is what has shown us up in this tournament -- critical moments in the game when we haven't been as efficient or as ruthless as the other teams have been. We need to improve our depth a bit. Hopefully the players are inspired to break into this thing."
He added: "We need to keep raising the level of our domestic competition. I think it has grown. Our national team will become stronger as well."
Postecoglou also spoke of his respect for Vicente del Bosque and said he gave "full credit" to Spain for their performance on Monday.
The former Brisbane Roar coach added: "I couldn't appreciate it today because I was on the receiving end of it, but I have great respect for them and for him as a manager."