The Socceroos may need veteran striker Archie Thompson to roll back the clock and have a tilt at his goalscoring world record when Australia take on Guam on Friday.
Guam v Australia Date: Friday December 7 Kick-off: 8.50pm AEDT Venue: Hong Kong Stadium, Hong Kong
Broadcast: Click here to watch the game live at 8:50pm AEDT.
Head-to-head: First meeting
Past five matches: Guam: Chinese Taipei 1-1 Guam, East Asian Cup qualifier, Hong Kong, December 5 2012 Korea DPR 5-0 Guam, East Asian Cup qualifier, Hong Kong, December 3 2012 Guam 1-2 Hong Kong, East Asian Cup qualifier, Hong Kong, December 1 2012 Macao 0-3 Guam, Friendly, Manila, September 29 2012 Chinese Taipei 2-0 Guam, Friendly, Manila, September 27 2012
Australia: Korea DPR 1-1 Australia, East Asian Cup qualifier, Hong Kong, December 5 2012 Hong Kong 0-1 Australia, East Asian Cup qualifier, Hong Kong, December 3 2012 Korea Republic 1-2 Australia, Friendly, Seoul, November 14 2012 Iraq 1-2 Australia, World Cup qualifier, Doha, October 16 2012 Jordan 2-1 Australia, World Cup qualifier, Amman, September 11 2012
Analysis: The Socceroos may need veteran striker Archie Thompson to roll back the clock and have a tilt at his goalscoring world record when Australia take on Guam on Friday.
Australia sit second in this week's East Asian Cup qualifying tournament after a 1-0 win over host nation Hong Kong and a 1-1 draw versus North Korea.
Victory in their final two qualifying matches against Guam and Chinese Taipei would take the Socceroos to 10 points, which may be enough to advance to the final stage of the East Asian Cup unless North Korea defeat Hong Kong on Sunday, which means goal difference will become a factor.
North Korea, who smashed Chinese Taipei 6-1 and Guam 5-0 in their opening two qualifiers, have a goal difference of plus 10, while the Socceroos have just plus one, meaning goals will be crucial on Friday for Holger Osieck's side.
Thompson does not have much of a profile outside of Australia but is in FIFA's record books for scoring the most goals ever in an international match when he hit the back of the net 13 times for the Socceroos against American Samoa in 2001.
The then-22-year-old striker led the way as the Socceroos destroyed the then-lowest-ranked nation in football 31-0 in a World Cup qualifier in Coffs Harbour.
While Guam have a much higher FIFA ranking than American Samoa did back in 2001, Australia still have enough quality to easily account for the tiny Pacific island.
Having selected close to his most experienced line-up so far in Hong Kong, Osieck has guaranteed the younger players in his squad will be given more game time against Guam and Chinese Taipei.
Osieck has been generally quite resistant to use younger untested players since he took over as the Socceroos head coach in August 2010, and revealed he was 'very surprised' when a relatively inexperienced line-up defeated South Korea 2-1 last month.
Friday's game will be the Socceroos' third in five days and Osieck's preferred line-up looked fatigued in the draw with North Korea, meaning his decision to use younger players against Guam may be forced upon him.
Either way, some fresh players with no fear may be exactly what Australia need to get on top of Guam early and score enough goals to bridge the goal difference gap to North Korea.
Having come off the bench in both games so far, expect A-League sensation Tom Rogic (Central Coast Mariners) to start against Guam, while Eli Babalj (Red Star Belgrade), Adam Taggart (Newcastle Jets) and Aaron Mooy (Western Sydney Wanderers) could all add something for Australia in terms of creating and scoring goals.
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