Australia
3
World Cup Qualifiers
(Thu 12 Nov 2015, 08.00PM LOCAL)
FINAL
Venue: GIO Stadium
Fox Sports
SBS
Kyrgyzstan
0

Timeline

Preview: Socceroos v Kyrgyzstan

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FFA TV | Rogic relishing home comforts

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FFA TV | Socceroos ready to roll: Ange

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Leckie ruled out of Socceroos qualifiers

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Preview: Socceroos v Kyrgyzstan
Preview: Socceroos v Kyrgyzstan
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FFA TV | Rogic relishing home comforts
FFA TV | Rogic relishing home comforts
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FFA TV | Socceroos ready to roll: Ange
FFA TV | Socceroos ready to roll: Ange
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Leckie ruled out of Socceroos qualifiers
Leckie ruled out of Socceroos qualifiers

Preview: Socceroos v Kyrgyzstan World Cup qualifier

The Socceroos return to Canberra for the first time since 2011 and aim to return to winning ways on their FIFA World Cup Russia 2018™ qualification journey when they face the tricky Central Asian opponent.

After the Aussies’ shock 2-0 defeat to Jordan last month, the Socceroos have little room for error against 124th-ranked Kyrgyzstan.

Aleksandr Krestinin’s side put up an impressive fight in Bishkek in June, and head to the nation’s capital with their own qualification hopes on a knife edge.

Kyrgyzstan are currently third in the group, just one point behind the Socceroos, so this is almost their last chance to stay alive in qualifying for the World Cup.

For that reason, this looms as a tricky test for the green and gold and a night of World Cup drama for the fans in the nation’s capital.

Worryingly for Socceroo boss Ange Postecoglou, there are a few injury concerns to consider when trying to come up with his starting XI.

With another qualifier against Bangladesh just five days later, Postecoglou may opt to save a couple of players who aren’t quite 100% for what will be a difficult test in Dhaka next Tuesday. 

For Thursday’s game, starting XI defender Matthew Spiranovic was ruled out on Monday, while number one Mat Ryan and attacker Mat Leckie appear very long odds to play.

Ryan has had just four training sessions after returning from a two-month lay-off with a knee injury, while a respiratory illness means Leckie will only join the squad just over 24 hours before kick-off.

There’s also some doubt over left-back Jason Davidson, who is battling a calf problem which has restricted him to only light duties in training.

But even with all those injury concerns, the Socceroos have the depth and quality.

Skipper Mile Jedinak returns to bolster a midfield that oozes technical quality. His leadership in Amman was missed.

Canberra boy Tom Rogic, in-from Aaron Mooy, Mark Milligan and Massimo Luongo should ensure the home side have the bulk of possession as they seek to control the tempo.

And in attack, the likes of Tim Cahill, Tomi Juric, Nathan Burns and James Troisi are all in strong form with their clubs.

The pitch at GIO Stadium looks sensational and will suit the Socceroos fast-paced passing game much more than what they encountered on a bumpy surface in Bishkek.

The weather could be a factor, though, with storms set to hit Canberra in the build-up to the match on Thursday night.

Kyrgyzstan troubled Australia on the counter-attack in Bishkek, in particular through their wingers Mirlan Murzaev and Anton Zemlianukhin.

It’s likely to be an area they will look to exploit again, especially with some new faces likely to be in Australia’s back four.

But back on home soil, the Socceroos generally take it to a new level.

They won’t give the visitors any time to breathe in possession and – like Bangladesh experienced in Perth in September – they will look to kill the game with an early onslaught.

It should be a fascinating encounter in the nation’s capital as the Road to Russia 2018 heats up.

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FFA TV | Meredith thrilled with Socceroos debut Play Video

FFA TV | Meredith thrilled with Socceroos debut

James Meredith says he was pleased with his debut for Australia against Kyrgyzstan.

Post Match Videos

Pregame videos

FFA TV | Meredith thrilled with Socceroos debut

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FFA TV | Socceroos light up Canberra

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Socceroos dazzle in Canberra

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Socceroos wrap and A-League preview

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FFA TV | Meredith thrilled with Socceroos debut
FFA TV | Meredith thrilled with Socceroos debut
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FFA TV | Socceroos light up Canberra
FFA TV | Socceroos light up Canberra
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Socceroos dazzle in Canberra
Socceroos dazzle in Canberra
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Socceroos wrap and A-League preview
Socceroos wrap and A-League preview

Socceroos return to winning ways

The Socceroos have got back on track on their Road to Russia after a comprehensive 3-0 win in their FIFA World Cup 2018 qualifier at GIO Stadium on Thursday night.

In front of just under 20,000 fans in Canberra, the Aussies cantered to victory thanks to skipper Mile Jedinak’s 40th-minute penalty and second-half goals via Tim Cahill and Ildar Amirov’s own goal.

The emphatic victory sees the Socceroos close the gap on group leaders Jordan to just one point, ahead of next week’s clash with Bangladesh.

Much to the delight of the home fans, Canberra boy Tom Rogic came off the bench for a 30-minute cameo as the green and gold bounced back from last month’s shock loss to Jordan with a bang.

The only concern for coach Ange Postecoglou are injuries to attackers Tomi Juric and Nathan Burns which could rule them out of Tuesday’s game in Dhaka.  

Bradford City’s James Meredith made his debut at left-back in a surprising 4-4-2 formation with Juric and Cahill in a two-pronged strikeforce.

And it was Cahill that almost gave the Socceroos a dream start inside two minutes.

Jedinak surged forward down the left and his cross took a deflection before finding Cahill, his acrobatic volley superbly saved by Pavel Matiash.

The visitors were content to sit back and absorb the pressure, allowing the Socceroos a mountain of possession – more than 70 percent for the first half.

So it was only a matter of time before they carved out another opening and again Cahill was inches away from getting it.

After Aaron Mooy was denied by another smart save by Matiash, the loose ball fell to Cahill but his curling left-foot strike hit the post and not the back of the net.

An injury to Juric saw Burns introduced before the half hour mark and his injection of pace and trickery gave a new dimension to the Socceroos attack.

Mark Milligan somehow squandered a certain goal seven minutes from the break, failing to connect with a simple tap-in from close range after Matiash spilled Burns initial effort.

Luckily for the midfielder, his blushes were spared a minute later.

The Socceroos won a penalty after Burns was clattered into in the box, Jedinak emphatically dispatching it into the corner for a 1-0 lead at the break.

Intent not to give the visitors a sniff, the Socceroos doubled their lead less than five minutes after the resumption with Cahill bagging his 42nd international goal.

Mooy split open the defence with a perfectly-weighted through ball and the evergreen talisman did the rest before wheeling off to the corner flag for his trademark goal celebration.

Hometown hero Rogic received a huge ovation as he came on for the last half hour, replacing a tiring Jedinak.

The Canberra faithful had more reason to cheer soon after as Mooy’s corner was diverted into his own net by Amirov to give the scoreline a much truer reflection.

And it would have been a whole lot more if not from some wasteful late finishing and some fine saves from the exceptional Matiash.

Australia 3 (Jedinak 40’, Cahill 50’, Amirov (og) 69’)

Kyrgyzstan 0

Crowd: 19,412 @ GIO Stadium