Aussies Abroad: Behich, Genreau find the net in Europe

The pre-season friendlies are coming thick and fast ahead of the new seasons in Europe, with a number of Aussies in action overnight.

Caltex Socceroos defender Aziz Behich was in action for his club Bursaspor as they took on fellow Turkish outfit Afjet Afyonspor.

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And Behich, one of Australia’s best performers at the recent FIFA World Cup™, scored the only goal of the match in a 1-0 win.

Nine minutes before the break, Behich received the ball in space about 35 yards from goal, driving at the heart of the defence before fooling the keeper with a superb shot with his weaker right foot.

It was a superb goal from the in-form left-back and augurs well for the new Turkish Super Lig season, as well as January’s AFC Asian Cup.


Elsewhere, Melbourne City youngster Denis Genreau has continued his excellent goal-scoring form since his loan switch to Dutch club PEC Zwolle.

Genreau, who is on a season-long loan with the Eredivisie side, scored his side’s only goal in their 3-1 loss to Hannover 96.

The teenager finished off some excellent lead-up work Vito van Crooij and Ryan Thomas, curling a pinpoint strike into the far corner of the net to level the scores midway through the first half.

It’s Genreau’s third goal of the pre-season for John van ‘t Schip’s troops.

Caltex Socceroos midfielder Massimo Luongo played his first 45 minutes of the pre-season as QPR came from two goals down to draw 2-2 with Bundesliga side Hoffenheim.

After falling behind to a brace from David Otto, Steve McClaren’s men got back into the game through a Toni Leistner header before Ryan Manning completed the comeback with just two minutes left.

“It was tough – the first game of pre-season always is,” Luongo said on QPR’s website.

“It was good to get some minutes and to learn what the boys have been working on for the last two or three weeks.

“I am a little bit behind fitness-wise and in terms of the structure of how we play but I thought the boys did really well and we looked good out there.”

Bailey Wright also played 45 minutes for his Bristol City side as they lost 1-0 in a friendly against Spain’s Rayo Vallecano, while James Meredith came off the bench just after the hour mark for his first outing of the pre-season, as Millwall beat Cambridge United 2-0.