Socceroos captain Mark Milligan said his side are “very keen” to produce an emphatic response against Palestine at the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019™ on Friday evening (AEDT).
Australia were beaten 1-0 by Jordan in their first match of the tournament but Milligan is confident a big performance is just around the corner.
“The boys are very keen to turn around the first result and we definitely know that we have that within us,” he told reporters.
“We know where we fell short and where we need to be better and I think, you know, getting the chance quickly is good.
“The great thing about football is when we go out tomorrow night and put in a good performance, the first game will be a distant memory and we’ll move forward.”
Milligan said a series of “very intense” sessions had Graham Arnold’s side primed for the Palestine test.
“The morale in the squad has been very good,” he added.
“When we’ve been on the field, everything has been very intense.
“We’re still very confident in what we’re doing and the way we do it.”
And the versatile veteran said that while the Socceroos were more than aware of the strengths that Palestine possess, keeping focus on their own objectives was crucial.
“While we’re very aware of their strengths and weaknesses, I think, again, the main focus has had to be on us doing things the way we want to but doing them better,” he said.
“We need to focus on what we do with the ball and the other night, that wasn’t good enough.
“We’ll face different challenges [to what we faced against Jordan] and we need to be prepared for it, which we are.
“Most importantly, we need to execute what we do well.”
Match preview: Socceroos v Uzbekistan
Having finished the group stage on a strong note, the Socceroos head into their AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019™ Round of 16 clash against Uzbekistan in a do-or-die encounter. Australia bounced back from their opening fixture to score six goals in two games, putting three goals past Pa
LIVE BLOG: Preparations ramp up ahead of Uzbekistan clash
Star winger Mathew Leckie is among the players involved in training as the Socceroos continue preparations for their do-or-die date with Uzbekistan at AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019™. Trent Sainsbury has spoken in the lead-up to the Round of 16 encounter and said team-mate Leckie was
Sainsbury gains fresh perspective from stint on the sideline
Socceroos defender Trent Sainsbury said the one-match suspension he served during Australia’s 3-2 win against Syria in the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019™ gave him a different perspective on the game. Sainsbury was forced to sit out the Socceroos’ final Group B fixture after accruing
How to watch the Socceroos v Uzbekistan in Round of 16
With the group stages well and truly complete, and teams knowing their Round of 16 fate, the Socceroos enter the pointy end of the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019™ with a battle against Uzbekistan on Tuesday morning (1am AEDT). Graham Arnold’s men have showcased a free-flowing brand o