Caltex Socceroos boss Ange Postecoglou says grinding out a win against Germany in Tuesday’s (AEST) Confederations Cup opener won’t be enough to satisfy him.
Postecoglou says while winning would be the ideal way to start the tournament, he insists the manner of his side’s performance is just as important.
THE AIM: PLAY WELL AND WIN
“We saw the last World Cup as a missed opportunity, even though we performed fairly well,” Postecoglou told reporters in Sochi ahead of Australia's tournament opener against Germany.
“We certainly don't want to be in that boat again where we play well and compete well and not win.
“Having said that, it won't be any more satisfying to me if we win and don't play well.
“If we get a victory that's backs to the wall and we scramble though, that's not going to be really satisfying either.
“We want to perform well - we won't shy away from that.
“We want to play well against the best - that's the measure of how you're going.
“But we want to win as well because that's what the country wants,” he added.
ANGE LAUDS CLASSY CAHILL
Postecoglou has yet to confirm who will captain the side in the absence of the injured Mile Jedinak.
Tim Cahill - who is set to make his 98th appearance for his country accompanied his coach to the pre-game media conference.
And Postecoglou was glowing in his praise of Cahill's contribution in filling the void left by Jedinak's withdrawal.
“Timmy's been great from the moment I took over,” he said.
“He's embraced that leadership role, he enjoys it and it keeps him young hanging out with the young boys.
“Tim's here firstly because of his ability - he's still able to produce at the highest level - but he adds to that with the experience he has around the place.
“Because he has done it all at the highest level, the players respond to that.
“He and Mark Milligan have a crucial role within this group because they're the two that have some meaningful experience.
“But it's also time for some of others to step up.
“I've got a few guys now who are edging towards 20-30 caps.
“They should start feeling comfortable at this level and start filling some of that leadership void we have because Mile's not here.”
AN UNALTERED AUSTRALIAN APPROACH
Australia and Germany will be the last of the eight nations to take the field at the “Tournament of Champions” in Russia.
And the Caltex Socceroos coach is adamant his team won’t change their approach on such a big stage against the world cup holders.
“We've been building over the last three years to build a core group of players who understand the kind of football we want to play and the kind of team we want to be,” said Postecoglou.
“Every game we've played and every opponent we've had we've treated as an opportunity to improve that and really embed it within the DNA of the side and we're well down the track now.
“It's a great opening game for us.
“We're playing against the world champions and a team that wants to win the world cup next year and [has] been faultless through their qualifying.
“What a great test for us and that's what we'll use it as.
“We're not going to hide - we're going to try to play our football against some of the best nations in the world and measure ourselves against that,” he said.