The Caltex Socceroos begin life under Bert van Marwijk in the early hours of Saturday morning (AEDT) when they take on Norway in Oslo in a crucial pre-2018 FIFA World Cup friendly.
While Australia hasn’t fared well in friendly matches in recent years, they have never lost to Norway in two previous meetings between the nations.
Here are five fast facts ahead of the highly-anticipated clash at the Ullevaal Stadion.
- This will be Australia’s third game against Norway, currently undefeated from their previous two meetings; a 1-0 win in 1997 and a 2-2 draw in 2004.
- The Caltex Socceroos will be looking for back-to-back wins for the first time since June 2017 after securing a 3-1 win in their last outing against Honduras.
- Each of Norway’s last six games has seen one side keep a clean sheet, with the Norwegians picking up three wins and three losses in that span.
- Australia have only managed to claim victory in one of their last nine friendlies (D3 L5); beating Greece 1-0 in June 2016 before losing to them just three days later.
- Tim Cahill is the only remaining Caltex Socceroo from their 2-2 stalemate with Norway in 2004; Australia’s leading scorer bagging the first of his side’s two goals on that day.
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