The message is clear – the Qantas Socceroos must emerge from Stadium Australia with maximum points from Tuesday's clash against Oman.
The message and the expectation is clear - the Qantas Socceroos must emerge from Stadium Australia with maximum points from Tuesday's clash against Oman.
Coach Holger Osieck addressed a significant number of local media and insisted his team have been well prepared to cope with the pressure of winning all three points and taking a significant step towards next year-s FIFA World Cup in Brazil.
“We don-t have to talk around the subject, it-s a game that we have to win,” Osieck said.
“So far, I-m quite pleased with our preparation, we had a lot of time, a couple of extra days to really intensively prepare.
“I-m very confident, the spirit in the team is good, very positive, the boys are all upbeat.
“It-s a very crucial one and we want to win it, there-s no if-s and but-s, no further discussion, that is what we are here for and that is what we will do.”
Osieck also credited the depth available to him for tomorrow-s clash, indicating the strides made by Australia-s next generation in recent months has the Qantas Socceroos in a strong position.
“I-m now in a position, I have to admit, that I haven-t been before on many occasions, that I really have some headaches - but positive headaches,” Osieck said.
“There-s a great deal of offer now, of players, with decent quality, there-s players who really made tremendous progress in the last couple of months and they are not just knocking at the door of the Qantas Socceroos - they already went through.
“What I expect from them now, that they really deliver and the aspects they show will be transferable onto the pitch.”
Captain Mark Schwarzer - who will wear the armband in the absence of suspended incumbent Lucas Neill, also spoke of his admiration for Australia-s emerging talents.
“It-s been great to see, particularly in the last twelve months, there-s been indications that there-s been a lot of younger players coming through,” Schwarzer said.
“Not only coming into the squad and just making up the numbers, but also starting to really put their head down and really trying to start to knock on the door.
“I think the group of players that we have, particularly the young players that are in the squad at the moment and have been recently are overall a very good core of players.”
The Qantas Socceroos are potentially four matches away from securing their passage to a third straight FIFA World Cup, with a positive result tomorrow seemingly fundamental to such ambitions.
With only a point separating each of Australia, Iraq, Oman and Jordan just beyond the midway point of Group B, a win for the Qantas Socceroos would likely put Osieck-s charges in a position of great strength - particularly with Australia-s final two matches to be played on home soil.
“The training within the week helped me a lot to, let-s say, get clarification on who is going to start,” Osieck said.
“I-m pretty confident that the choice for tomorrow will be a good one.”
The Qantas Socceroos- road to Brazil recommences on Tuesday, 26 March at Sydney-s Stadium Australia with a crucial clash against Oman. Kick off is at 7.30pm AEDT.
Tickets for this match are available from www.footballaustralia.com.au/tickets.
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