Preview: Colombia v Caltex Socceroos
Australia look to bounce back quickly from their defeat to Norway when they face South American powerhouse Colombia on Wednesday morning (6:00am AEDT on Fox Sports and Channel Ten) at Craven Cottage in London.
Bert van Marwijk's first game in charge started well but ended in a heavy defeat. Now fans are interested so see how the Caltex Socceroos will respond.
4 THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW
- Colombia were also in action on Saturday morning (AEDT) as they came from two goals down to beat ninth-ranked France, one of Australia's FIFA World Cup group opponents, 3-2 in Paris.
- These two nations last met in 2001 with late goals from Steve Corica and Scott Chipperfield not enough to prevent Australia falling to a 3-2 defeat.
- Jackson Irvine's goal against Norway was his second in an Australian shirt; his first came exactly a year ago to the day of the Colombia game when he netted in a 2-0 FIFA World Cup qualifying win over UAE.
- The last time Australia played at Craven Cottage was in September 2014 when they beat Saudi Arabia 3-2; all three goalscorers (Tim Cahill, Mile Jedinak and Bailey Wright) are part of the current squad.
AUSTRALIAN SQUAD NEWS
Bert van Marwijk showed his preference for a 4-2-3-1 system in his opening game in charge and will likely implement the same formation in this match.
But given the defeat in Oslo, and the nature of international windows, there are bound to be some changes to the starting side.
The likes of Tomi Juric, Robbie Kruse and Tommy Rogic all came off the bench against Norway and may be used from the start.
Others who weren't involved in the first game may also get their chance, with Hyundai A-League players Josh Risdon, James Troisi and Josh Brillante and Millwall defender James Meredith all in line for some minutes.
Tim Cahill should also see his first game time under the new national boss.
With Dimi Petratos, Andrew Nabbout and Aleksandar Susnjar all earning international debuts against Norway, goalkeeper Danny Vukovic is set to earn his first cap after Van Marwijk said both 32-year-old and fellow shot-stopper Brad Jones will play 45 minutes each.
Central defenders Matt Jurman and Trent Sainsbury have left camp as both continue their recoveries from injury.
CURRENT WORLD RANKINGS
It's crucial Australia rebound positively in Bert van Marwijk's second game in charge.
The defeat by Norway was an unfortunate way to start his tenure and he'll want to show Caltex Socceroos fans that he and his side are able to react positively to defeat.
Following this game, he won't see his squad again until June, so it's vital the players disperse to their clubs off the back of a positive performance.
It's also one of few remaining chances for many of them to force their way onto the 23-man roster for Russia.
Caltex Socceroos v Colombia
WHEN: Wednesday, March 28 - kick-off 6am AEDT
WHERE: Craven Cottage, London, England
HOW TO WATCH: Live on Fox Sports and Network Ten
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