Analysis: Three key performers behind Subway Socceroos' sturdy victory over Bangladesh

The Subway Socceroos’ emphatic win over Bangladesh saw an abundance of excellent performers from the 16 players who featured at AAMI Park.

There was Jamie Maclaren’s clinical hattrick, Mitch Duke’s double, Craig Goodwin’s trademark raking crosses and all-round brilliance from the Green and Gold.

But, out of the squad, the trio of Jordan Bos, Connor Metcalfe and Lewis Miller caught the eye, with each excelling whilst bringing a unique asset to the superior Aussie side.

In this article, we look at what made those individual performances distinctive and brilliant.

Jordan Bos

It’s hard to believe Jordan Bos was playing for the Green and Gold for just the fifth time.

Throughout the match, Bos showed versatility many veterans aspire to possess, while his unique technical ability was matched by a sense of maturity that makes it shocking to write that he is still just twenty-one years of age.

Bos began, in the Socceroos’ predominately 2-3-5 build-up, on the left of the three, looking to receive the ball and keep the tempo high.

Bos in 2-3-5

While not yet in full flow, Bos was incredibly tidy in possession, remaining press-resistant and moving the ball with good pace.

Bos only had a 15-minute stint in this role, but it showed his versatility - whilst being exceptional in the final third, he also has the capacity, when required, to sit deeper and retain possession with grace and elegance.

This will be crucial in the latter stages of the qualifiers and the Asian Cup, where Australia will face more threatening opposition.

Having a fullback who can evade pressure as clinically as Bos, and then be able to drive forwards into attack - as Bos has done not just against Bangladesh but when facing the likes of Argentina and Mexico - will be crucial to all aspects of the Socceroos’ play in possession and on transition.

From deep, Bos could become a crucial weapon in supplementing the ferocious counter-attacks that became the defining attacking point of Australia at the 2022 World Cup.

However, it’s also his final third play, which was exemplified through a movement to the left of the front five after fifteen or so minutes.

In the second half, with Bos’ out of position as a left-midfielder, he occupied both the left-wing and inside-left positions of the front five, rotating with fresh left-back Aziz Behich.

From here, Bos was deadly, involved in three goals which each showcased a different skill of his wide range of qualities.

He played a part in setting up the fourth goal, through picking up the ball wide left and directly taking on his marker.

He drove inside onto his supposedly weaker, yet remarkably strong right-foot, and curled a cross in - while cleared, it led to Brandon Borello’s fizzing shot which allowed Duke to tap in his brace.

Bos’ ability to go either way, through cutting in onto his right or going down the line on his left, makes him a consistent threat in 1v1s, something which the Socceroos will continue to reap the rewards from.

His assist for the fifth goal signified his poise and maturity in the final third; gliding down the line after receiving a pass in space from Behich, he calmly squared the ball to former teammate Maclaren for a tap-in.

Meanwhile, he received no direct credit for Australia’s sixth goal, but deserves the majority of the plaudits.

After a cleared corner, he ran onto a rare mistimed touch from Connor Metcalfe.

In a position, under heavy pressure, where many would look to emphatically clear, Bos instead took the ball in his stride, and after beating his marker to the ball, directly beat three players with a mesmerising dribble.

It was this moment that encapsulated Bos at his finest.

He’s a unique left-back; Bos is able to play a more conservative, recycling role, but when getting into the final third, his diverse skillset - consisting of an ability to cross or shoot from either foot, and a gliding dribbling ability - is extremely rare for a fullback, and something all Socceroos fans should cherish.

Connor Metcalfe

Connor Metcalfe is a player who has developed his skillset exponentially since his early days at Melbourne City.

The former defensive midfielder has now become a lethal attacking weapon for both club (FC St. Pauli) and country, combining elegant dribbling and strong running with incision in the final third.

While Metcalfe played predominately on the right side of the three in the 2-3-5, Graham Arnold and his coaching staff cleverly positioned Metcalfe in a more advanced role than that of the other two players.

Metcalfe in 2-2-6

This allowed Metcalfe to receive the ball in pockets and become a sixth attacker by driving the ball forward, almost alternating the system to a left-side dominant 2-2-6.

It meant he could utilise his ability to keep possession in tight spaces and receive the ball on the half-turn, maximising Metcalfe’s skillset.

As a result, the advanced midfielder excelled exceptionally as a creative outlet for the Green and Gold, conjuring up five chances and taking four shots.

This came as a result of Metcalfe being able to receive the ball in this more advanced space and manipulate his body to drive inside onto his left foot, before being able to pick out a killer pass or shoot himself.

Metcalfe drive and shot

Beyond his ability in pockets of space in more central areas, Metcalfe also showed, through his first assist for Australia’s second goal, an ability in a wide right position where he has featured at times for club side FC St. Pauli this campaign.

His driving runs - on and off the ball - and manipulation of space and his body extend to the wide areas of the field, where Metcalfe beat a marker with a clever off-ball shimmy before using his power to accelerate forward, before incisively picking out Brandon Borello for a tap-in in the middle.

Metcalfe is yet another versatile player at the Socceroos’ disposal, and a player who continues to add to his depth of skills.

Capable of occupying a role deeper in the double pivot, as an attacking midfielder and even as a floating winger when required, Metcalfe and his technical precision and powerful running will be crucial throughout the remaining World Cup Qualifiers and Asian Cup campaign.

Lewis Miller

Making just his second start as a Socceroo in his third appearance, Lewis Miller showed the full extent of his on-ball qualities in the Green and Gold.

The right-back demonstrated his strong dribbling ability, both in driving forward and retaining possession clinically - Miller was the most fouled player in the match, winning five free kicks for Australia.

Miller was press resistant throughout the match, always keeping his body in front of himself and the presser, and from here, through weaving and changing direction, and his explosive acceleration to move forwards when space opened, he kept the ball delightfully and frustrated Bangladesh.

It’s a small thing, but Miller’s ability to win fouls with his assertive dribbling even when being pressed could be crucial throughout the next few years - particularly at the Asian Cup, where the Socceroos will look to capitalise on their exceptional ability from set pieces as a method of scoring.

Beyond this, Miller’s attacking instinct was clear to see.

Playing predominately on the right flank of the front five, Miller consistently looked to make runs in behind and continue this into the box.

Whilst not taking any shots from these positions, his 1.87-metre frame makes him a considerable aerial threat and presence at the far post from crosses - something that could be capitalised upon, particularly through box overloads, as the qualifying campaign progresses.

Meanwhile, Miller’s positive running led to four chances created for the Green and Gold, including an assist for Maclaren’s hattrick, which was a precise square ball across the face of goal.

One of Miller’s strengths in the final third is using his acceleration and power to take a positive touch forward, whether under pressure or in space, before converging inside and picking out a dangerous pass in the box.

While the aggressive touch doesn't always remain in Miller's control, his strong counter-pressing often forces the opposition to clear the ball out of play, giving his side a territorial gain.

This quality - and quality of touch - was exemplified in his assist and is something the Socceroos can look to rely on in the future, in combination with Miller’s precise crossing and threatening runs in behind. 

The Subway Socceroos play their second FIFA World Cup 2026™ Second Round Asian Qualifier when they travel to face Palestine in Kuwait in the early hours of Wednesday morning (1:00AM AEDT).


Palestine v Subway Socceroos
Tuesday, 21 November
Jaber Al-Ahmed International Stadium, Kuwait
Kick-off: 5.00pm (local) / 1am AEDT (Wednesday, 22 November)
Broadcast: Network 10 and Paramount+