Josep Gombau is delighted with how Australia's U-23s played in qualifying for the 2018 AFC U-23 Championships, and has given Caltex Socceroos coach Ange Postecoglou a full report on the successful campaign.
The Australian under-23 coach has returned to Spain from Myanmar after his side secured qualification for January's 2018 AFC U-23 Championship in China.
Australia topped Group F without conceding a goal in three matches.
“I am very happy,” Gombau told www.socceroos.com.au from Spain on Thursday night.
“We did our job - we played good football.
“It's not so important whether you win or lose - it's the way you play and approach every single game.
“We went from less to more in terms of performance.
“In all the games, we were the team that dominated.
“We played our football - we were always playing from the back, always attacking, always trying to recover the ball as quickly as possible after we lost it and pressing high up the field,” he said.
TOUGH CONDITIONS IN MYANMAR
With a squad of largely Hyundai A-League players, Gombau oversaw comfortable victories over Brunei, Singapore and Myanmar.
The 3-0 win over their hosts which sealed Asian Cup qualification was particularly pleasing for the U-23 mentor.
“We played an away game that we had to win to qualify in front of 30,000 people supporting the local team in humidity we are not used to, and with pitch conditions not the best,” said Gombau.
“It was a big experience for the boys because it's not just football, it's a competition.
“They are young players and at this point in their lives, it's something that helps them grow as players.
“It's been a nice experience for all of us and all the players have learnt from it.
“I'm excited for the things which are coming now in January.”
NEXT GENERATION OF CALTEX SOCCEROOS
Gombau believes it won't be long before many of his young charges make the leap to the full Caltex Socceroos side.
And he revealed those discussions have already begun with Ange Postecoglou.
“I’ve had a long conversation with Ange,” he said.
“He followed the competition and saw the games.
“We discussed the team's performance and the players.
“We don't forget that the under-23's is the step below when players can become Socceroos.
“We spoke about individual players who in a short time or in the future can represent the Socceroos,” he said.
Aussies Abroad: Vukovic’s Genk beaten in battle of Belgium’s top two
Danny Vukovic’s Genk remain well clear on top of the table despite falling to a rare defeat in Belgium against Club Brugge overnight. In a meeting of the competition’s top two at the Jan Breydel Stadion, Genk were beaten the fired-up home side, going down 3-1. There was lit
Aussies Abroad: Ryan’s Brighton through to Quarter-Finals while Milligan, Giannou pick up strong results
There were a handful of Caltex Socceroos in action on Sunday morning (AEDT) while some key figures were rested as their clubs negotiated cup ties. Firstly to Europe where Mark Milligan played a full 90 at the heart of Hibernian’s midfield as they welcomed new manager Danny Hec
Aussies Abroad: Luongo gallant in Watford defeat
Caltex Socceroos midfielder Massimo Luongo can turn his attention to the EFLChampionship after QPR crashed out of the FA Cup on Saturday morning (AEDT). The 26-year-old played the full 90 minutes in QPR’s 1-0 loss to Watford at Loftus Road, in a tight game where each side cou
When to watch your Caltex Socceroos this weekend
There's FA Cup action on the cards for two Australians this weekend as another prepares for a massive top-of-the-table encounter. Multiple players are involved in matches with major title ramifications, while Mark Milligan has a new manager to impress in Scotland. Read on t