Massimo Luongo says he is relishing the responsibility of being a key playmaker for the Socceroos after putting in another stellar performance in the 4-0 win over Oman on Tuesday.
After a man-of-the-match display in the drubbing of Kuwait on Friday, Luongo maintained the rage, involved in three of the Socceroos’ four goals at Stadium Australia.
“When I get on the ball it’s just natural for me to try and make something happen,” Luongo said.
“I worry about we’re I’m positioned and how I can affect the strikers. I don’t really want to get the ball off the centre-backs and make an easy pass just to get myself into the game. I’d rather play more of a risky area and be more affective if things come off.
“I’ve got a good relationship with (Robbie) Kruse and (Mathew) Leckie and Ivan (Franjic) at right-back so they help me out a lot.”
The Swindon Town midfielder has been somewhat of the surprise-packet of the tournament so far for the Socceroos and admits he is enjoying the ride.
“This is all new to me…it’s such a high level and it’s difficult sometimes. My minds always playing on me ‘will I be good this game or not’,” he admitted.
“Especially after all the attention I got from last game but if anything it’s given me more confidence and the boys have helped me along the way.
“I’m trying to keep my head down and not worry about all that. We haven’t had the most positive build up to this campaign but we’ve always had the belief.
“The way we play is so positive that we get one we always feel like there’s other goals in the game no matter what the scoreline is.
One player who has enjoyed Luongo’s progress is veteran midfielder Mark Bresciano, who ironically has been the one who has been relegated to the bench due to the youngsters rise.
Bresciano says Luongo’s confidence on the ball and range of passing reminds him of former Socceroo midfielder Josip Skoko.
“The way he is on the ball, he’s very comfortable. His body position, his awareness and his passing. If I had to compare him to someone in the past it’s probably Skoko,” Bresciano said of Luongo.
“He’s a kid I’ve always spoken highly of. I’ve seen his ability in the past and now it’s come out and he’s shown it to the public.
“It hasn’t come as a surprise to me, I’ve seen it coming and hopefully he can keep it going.”
Bresciano, who has been used as a substitute in the first two matches, says he feels ready to start if Postecoglou will give him the chance.
“I’ve been ready since day one, it’s the way the coach is selecting the team. I’m taking it and hoping I can help out the team as it goes,” he said.
“It’s very frustrating but at the same time I’ve got to accept it. There are other games coming up in the tournament, I’ve just got to prepare well and if I’m called to the occasion I’ll be ready.”
The final hurdle for the Socceroos to secure top spot in the group will be a tough challenge against the Korea Republic in Brisbane on Saturday.
“We will try to do the same again,” Bresciano said.
“In the first two games these teams have been very defensive so it’s made us attack more but I think Korea will be a different side and we’ll both be playing to get the top spot in the group.
“It will be an open game and an exciting one to watch.”
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