Baan wants improved performance

Qantas Under 23’s coach Rob Baan is demanding a much improved performance from his team, if they are to beat Jordan in their first home qualifying match on Wednesday night at Hindmarsh Stadium.

Qantas Under 23-s coach Rob Baan is demanding a much improved performance from his team, if they are to beat Jordan in their first home qualifying match on Wednesday night at Hindmarsh Stadium.

Despite a confidence-boosting 0-0 draw with Iran, Baan believes that Jordan will pose a much tougher task than Iran, after having viewed their match against Saudi Arabia and talking with colleagues from the middle east.

“After the match (against Iran), I was not so happy at all,” said Baan from Adelaide. “Because we didn-t play a good match in the first half, in the second half we played much better.

“We do have confidence, but to be very honest I have seen Jordan on DVD and heard from my colleagues and this is the group that qualified for the U20-s (FIFA World Youth Championship) and they have a really good team. A better team than Iran I think.”

Jordan lost its opening match at home 1-0 to Saudi Arabia and can-t afford to lose this game, but in any case Baan is not expecting them to come attacking.

“On the counter-attack,” was Baan-s answer, when asked how he thought Jordan would play this game. “As we want to win this game, we have to go on the attack and we will do that. So we have to keep in mind that is what they are waiting for and we have to find the right balance (between attack and defence).”

One of Baan-s major concerns was the workload and travel that his Sydney and Adelaide players of his squad were experiencing, combining these qualifiers with their AFC Champions League commitments.

“I am concerned and a good example of this is Mark Milligan, because he came back with a hamstring injury,” Baan said.

“He wants to play in the Olyroo team, he wants to be there and he wants to play tomorrow, so I am very much depending on my medical staff now. We did not train him at all until this morning and he says he feels fine. He will be in the starting eleven, but I will tell him that he shouldn-t take any risks and that as soon as he feels something I will take him out.”

Baan has also told his players that they are in the shop window for the Asia Cup and believes that anywhere between 3-5 players of his Under 23 squad could be part of the Asian Cup squad in July.

The Under 23-s play Jordan at Hindmarsh Stadium in Adelaide on Wednesday night, with kick-off at 7.00pm (ACDT).

Ticket Details:-

All sales are via VenueTix from 9am (ACDT) Thursday 8 March or at the venue on match day.

Ph - 08 8225 8888

Web -

All Tickets

Adult - $10.00 Child/Concession - $5.00 Family - $20.00

Gates Open: 5.30pm

The 2O-man squad for the match against Jordan on March 14 is:

Leigh Broxham (Melbourne Victory), Mark Bridge (Newcastle Jets), Nathan Burns (Adelaide United), Adam Casey (Sydney FC), Robert Cornthwaite (Adelaide United), Adam D'Apuzzo (Newcastle Jets), Bruce Djite (Adelaide United), Peter Eleftherakis (Campbelltown City, SA), Ben Griffin (Queensland Roar), Troy Hearfield (Newcastle Jets), Ben Kennedy (Newcastle Jets), Vince Lia (Melbourne Victory), Adrian Leijer (Melbourne Victory), Mark Milligan (Sydney FC), Jason Naidovski (AIS), Kristian Sarkies (Melbourne Victory), Nikolai Topor-Stanley (Sydney FC), Tando Velaphi (Perth SC, WA), Danny Vukovic (Central Coast Mariners), Nick Ward (Brighton & Hove Albion, England).

Perth Glory midfielder Billy Celeski has returned home after receiving treatment in camp.

Group D consists of Australia, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Jordan and will conclude on June 6.

The top two teams will progress to the third and final stage of qualifying, where 12 nations will be split into three groups.

The third stage will be held from August 22 - November 21, with only the three group winners representing Asia at the Beijing Olympic Games.

Match Details:-

Round 2 - Match Day 1 - (Away) Wednesday 28 February 2007 Iran v Australia 0-0 Tehran

Round 2 - Match Day 2 - (Home) Wednesday 14 March 2007 Australia v Jordan Hindmarsh Stadium, Adelaide

Round 2 - Match Day 3 - (Home) Wednesday 28 March 2007 Australia v Saudi Arabia Hindmarsh Stadium, Adelaide

Round 2 - Match Day 4 - (Away) Wednesday 18 April 2007 Saudi Arabia v Australia Damman

Round 2 - Match Day 5 - (Home) Wednesday 16 May 2007 Australia v Iran Hindmarsh Stadium, Adelaide

Round 2 - Match Day 6 - (Away) Wednesday 6 June 2007 Jordan v Australia Venue to be confirmed

Click on the following link for more information on the Qantas Under 23s, including player profiles: