Not long after touching down in Melbourne, the Qantas Socceroos were back on the training paddock preparing for Tuesday's vital clash against Jordan.
Not long after touching down in Melbourne, the Qantas Socceroos were back on the training paddock preparing for Tuesday's vital clash against Jordan at Docklands Stadium.
The equation is now a simple one - it's win or bust for Australia in their quest to qualify for the 2014 FIFA World Cup, but with a strong performance in Japan under their belts, confidence in the camp is high.
"Everyone wants to be qualified as soon as possible, but at least our destiny is in our own hands," said midfielder Mark Milligan, one of several fresh faces that stood out in Japan.
"That last match against Japan was something we really needed, maybe not so much in terms of a result but in terms of the way that we went about our business.
“We had to work very hard again to get back on track and it was a good start to the three games and the two coming up.”
Australia's stirring 1-1 draw with the highly fancied Japanese in Saitama was in stark contrast to their previous outing - an uninspired 2-2 draw with Oman at Stadium Australia.
March's clash in Sydney seemed forever ago at the full time whistle in Japan, where over ninety plus minutes of engrossing, high quality football, the Qantas Socceroos' pride was well and truly restored.
"I thought we were very disciplined in the way we defended (against Japan) and I thought we were very dangerous on the counter attack too," said goal scorer Tommy Oar, whose maiden strike at senior international level ensured a share of the spoils in Japan for Australia.
"I think before the game there was a lot of critics for our last performance, so we can take a lot of confidence from our game on Tuesday night and I-m sure next week, we-ll be ready to go."
The second automatic qualification spot from Asia's Group B is currently two points beyond the Qantas Socceroos, but with a game in hand, three points against Jordan on Tuesday would have Australia in pole position going into the final match day.
The stakes have seldom been higher for a FIFA World Cup qualifier in Australia and the Qantas Socceroos are banking on a raucous Melbourne attendance to play their part in pointing the green and gold towards Brazil.
"I think it was shown in Japan what playing at home in front of a massive crowd can do," said Milligan.
"We-re very confident coming to Melbourne that everyone in Melbourne is going to turn up in great numbers at Docklands Stadium for us on Tuesday.
“It truly is an extra leg at times and it-s very much needed for us.
“That result away from home in front of a big crowd, I think gives us a lot of confidence coming home and playing in front of our own supporters.”
The Qantas Socceroos will conclude the current stage of Asian qualifiers upon their return home, firstly to face Jordan at Melbourne-s Docklands Stadium on Tuesday, 11 June. Kick off is at 7pm AEST. Click here for tickets.
Finally, the Qantas Socceroos will host Iraq at Sydney-s Stadium Australia on Tuesday, 18 June. Kick off is at 7.30pm AEST. Click here for tickets.
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