He may’ve played his last World Cup game, but Socceroo Tim Cahill is urging his teammates to heap more misery on Spain and finish above them on the Group B ladder.
The Socceroos meet Spain at the Arena da Baixada, Curitiba, next Monday (Tuesday 2am AEST) with both nations already out of contention to progress from Group B. With both on zero points from two games, only national pride is at stake with Holland and Chile already assured of progressing from the group.
Cahill, however, will be missing after picking up a yellow card in the 3-2 loss to Holland on Thursday morning (AEST).
But for Australia to finish off an eye-catching group campaign with points over a side oozing with class is firing the imagination of their star striker.
“We still have one more game to make our mark on this tournament and take three points," he said on Thursday.
“This last game is massive. If we beat Spain it will be one of the best moments in Australian football."
And he paid tribute to his coach Ange Postecoglou who, despite losing both opening games at the World Cup (Chile 3-1, Holland 3-2), has reinvigorated the national team since taking over eight months ago.
“Under Ange we trust in him and he trusts us. He knew a long time ago that we could do something special at this World Cup.
“It is great to have a coach who believes in us and who will be around for a long time.
"We were so close yesterday [against Holland]. When you look at it the only difference was Robben and van Persie.
They were very complimentary on how we played. We made them play in a way they didn't want to.
“I am more proud of what the boys and the boss have done. It's exciting for the kids coming through.
“I will do all I can to push these boys to the limit.”
On Thursday, the players enjoyed a recovery session at the pool at their home base in Vitoria.
It was a chance to reflect on the incredible performance – and goal by Tim Cahill – against the highly rated Dutch.
And as for his goal – a stunning volley that has gone viral and earned plaudits from some of the biggest names in world football - and Cahill took a philosophical view.
“To see the response at the game, back home and on social media has been fantastic.
“You look for moments to define your career and that goal yesterday was my time," said the New York Red Bulls star.
And while on the topic of his career, Cahill, 34, suggested his future might be away from the national team once his fantastic career in the national team ends.
“This is my last World Cup and I don't regret anything. I am so proud and privileged to be a part of this team.
“My next step in football will be at grassroots level with academies and kids. I have done everything in my career."
Cahill added: “If you dream hard enough it will come true. That is my message to all the kids.”
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