Defensive performance important: Spiranovic

Qantas Socceroos defender Matthew Spiranovic is determined to ensure Australia continues its forward momentum when taking on the Korea Republic.

Qantas Socceroo defender Matthew Spiranovic is determined to ensure Australia continues its forward momentum when taking on the Korea Republic on Wednesday.

Spiranovic led Australia-s defensive charge during last month-s FIFA World Cup qualification triumph over Iraq and is likely to feature again against the Korea Republic.

“There-s no doubt the Koreans are a very good side,” Spiranovic said.

“They-re fielding a young squad also, but a lot of K-League players, which everyone knows is a very strong league, so I-ve got no doubt that it-ll be a good test for us.

“Looking back at the game against Iraq, we want to continue that winning habit and we want to keep doing the things we done in the last game and get on a little bit of a roll and it-s no different on Wednesday.

“Everyone will want to be putting in a good performance and taking their opportunity.”

Spiranovic has been continuing his football education domestically in Qatar-s emerging Qatar Stars League with Doha-based club Al Arabi.

While not yet of the stature of many of its Asian counterparts, the Qatar Stars League currently attracts a cosmopolitan mix of present and former world football heavyweights.

Since the new season commenced in mid-September, Spiranovic has come up against Iraq talisman Younis Mahmoud and Spanish icon Raul, amongst others.

Additionally, a host of current internationals from Africa commonly provide Qatar Stars League clubs with their firepower, while only recently, Spiranovic-s club replaced their French coach Pierre Lechantre with respected former Egypt manager Hassan Shehata.

Even the Korea Republic is represented in the Qatar Stars League, with young defender Kim Ki-Hee - an inclusion in Korea-s squad for Wednesday-s friendly - fronting for his side Al Sailiya in their 2-2 draw against Spiranovic-s Al Arabi a fortnight ago.

“It-s been a pleasant surprise, the standard and the level over there in Qatar,” Spiranovic said.

“Each week I find myself against international players, whether it be Africans or Europeans, so I feel like I-m getting tested and that-s the most important thing, being challenged every weekend.”

The Qantas Socceroos will meet the challenge of fellow Asian heavyweights the Korea Republic at the Hwaseong Stadium on Wednesday, 14 November. Kick off is at 7pm local time (Kick off 9pm AEDT).

The Qantas Socceroos return to Australia in 2013, for the FIFA World Cup qualifier against Oman at Sydney-s Stadium Australia at 7.30pm, Tuesday, 26 March, followed by Iraq, at 7.30pm on Tuesday, 18 June.

Tickets for both matches at Stadium Australia are on sale now through Ticketek or via phone, 132 849.