Pinilla: ‘Chile not thinking about losing’

Chile are focused solely on their FIFA World Cup opener against the Socceroos on Friday, according to Chilean forward Mauricio Pinilla, who hasn’t entertained the possibility of losing to the unfancied Aussies.

The Group B opponents meet in Cuiaba at the Arena Pantanal on Friday night (Sat 8am AEST) but both face an uphill task to qualify due to the presence of Spain and the Netherlands. 

Realistically, Friday's meeting is a must-win encounter for both sides and Pinilla says all their focus is currently on Ange Postecoglou's men. 

The Cagliari striker maintains the Socceroos can cause a threat in the group but says they have not entertained the possibility of defeat. 

"Australia are a team who are much improved. We'll play against them like they are our strongest rival," he said on Tuesday.

"Today we only talk about Australia. Then you will see what comes along. We do not think about losing to Australia.

"All we are looking for is to improve day by day and work out the details for Friday's game.

"Chile have gained respect for the work that we have done in recent years. In Europe, they speak well of us."

However, Chile will almost certainly have to do without star man Arturo Vidal in Cuiaba.  

Vidal underwent minor knee surgery to repair a damaged meniscus on May 7 after helping Juventus to seal the Serie A title.

The procedure was intended to allow the versatile, energetic star to play without pain in Brazil.

However, his rehabilitation has not proceeded as quickly as expected. 

The 27-year-old came on in the 77th minute of Chile's 2-0 friendly win over Northern Ireland on Thursday and the brief cameo appears to have done him no favours.

Inflammation prevented Vidal from any meaningful involvement in training on Monday, prompting reports he could also be in doubt for Chile's other Group B matches against Netherlands and Spain.

If that proves to be the case, he could be cut from the squad altogether.

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