Camp in quotes: Attack-minded sessions have Caltex Socceroos raring to go

Attack has been the focus of the latest Caltex Socceroos camp and, as a result, the mood among the players is one of excitement and anticipation.

The excitement comes from not just the latest camp, in the United Arab Emirates ahead of Tuesday morning’s (AEDT) showdown with Kuwait, but also a series of training sessions in Turkey last month.

Without a game since the FIFA World Cup 2018, the Caltex Socceroos are eager for the chance to put their work on the training pitch to good use.

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Unable to depend on Tim Cahill or Mile Jedinak for goals going forward, new manager Graham Arnold will employ a different philosophy to make the most of his attacking weapons.

Here, we take a look back at the UAE training camp in quotes ...

Josh Risdon

“We haven’t had a game for a while, since the World Cup, it will be good to get back out on the pitch in a game.

“I’m sure everyone will put their best foot forward and get off to a good start in the new boss’ era.”


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Awer Mabil 

“From the last camp, you could see in training what we did will be quite exciting for the fans. 

“It’s really exciting to be involved and seeing the style of coaching and the way we want to score goals … we have the quality in the team, people who can score goals and people who can make goals also.”

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Brad Jones

“It’s an important time for us [with the Asian Cup] coming so soon after the [FIFA] World Cup and with the changes, ‘Arnie’ coming in and wanting to implement his way on how we’re going to play.”


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Tomi Juric

“That’s why they [Mabil, Denis Genreau, Kenny Dougall, Thomas Deng] have been selected to come here, because they have been doing so well.

“I’m sure they can make an imprint on this national team.”

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Alex Gersbach

“In Turkey, it was really good in training, the intensity was high.

“Obviously you still have that core group of players who played at the World Cup that have been with the Socceroos for the last four years and then some fresh faces on the side and some young players really eager to do well.


“Obviously it’s Arnie’s first game as head coach. It’s really important for us as a team to start the new phase well.”

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Milos Degenek

“We look forward to a good attacking way of football. We’re not taking any backward steps and we expect to have a very good four-year cycle towards the next [FIFA] World Cup, a very successful one.

“We expect to dominate countries here in Asia and the world.”

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Martin Boyle

“I was contacted by the Scotland manager [Alex McLeish] but I feel the face to face with ‘Arnie’, who came to our training ground and had a real sit down with me … we were sitting down for a good 20 or 30 minutes about the possibility of playing for Australia … the football really attracted me.


“He said that I’d suit the system really well. I feel like I can bring a lot to this team.”

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