The new generation of Qantas Socceroos will be given a chance to stake their claims as Australia prepare for the second phase of their World Cup qualifying campaign in Wednesday's friendly with Korea Republic.
Korea Republic v Australia Date: Wednesday November 14 Kick-off: 7pm local/9pm AEDT Venue: Hwaseong Stadium, Hwaseong
Head to head: Played: 23, Wins: Korea Republic 8, Australia 8, Draws: 7
Previous meeting: Australia 1-1 Korea Republic, Asian Cup group stage, Doha, January 14 2011
Past five matches: Korea Republic: Iran 1-0 Korea Republic, World Cup qualifier, Tehran, October 16 2012 Uzbekistan 2-2 Korea Republic, World Cup qualifier, Tashkent, September 11 2012 Korea Republic 2-1 Zambia, friendly, Fuzhou, August 15 2012 Korea Republic 3-0 Lebanon, World Cup qualifier, Goyang, June 12 2012 Qatar 1-4 Korea Republic, World Cup qualifier, Doha, June 8 2012
Australia: Iraq 1-2 Australia, World Cup qualifier, Doha, October 16 2012 Jordan 2-1 Australia, World Cup qualifier, Amman, September 11 2012 Lebanon 0-3 Australia, friendly, Tripoli, September 6 2012 Scotland 3-1 Australia, friendly, Edinburgh, August 15 2012 Australia 1-1 Japan, World Cup qualifier, Brisbane, June 12 2012
Analysis: The new generation of Qantas Socceroos will be given a chance to stake their claims for regular squad inclusion as Australia prepares for the second phase of their World Cup qualifying campaign in Wednesday's friendly with Korea Republic.
Coach Holger Osieck has named five uncapped players for the trip to Hwaseong, with Central Coast Mariners duo Tom Rogic and Mathew Ryan picked alongside Red Star Belgrade forward Eli Babalj, Melbourne Heart winger Aziz Behich and FSV Frankfurt striker Mathew Leckie.
While several European-based players have been left behind to focus on club commitments, there is no shortage of experience in the squad, with captain Lucas Neill and goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer among those called on to provide leadership.
Matthew Spiranovic, Alex Brosque, Luke Wilkshire, Carl Valeri and Matt McKay, who all started in last month's World Cup qualifier against Iraq, are expected to feature again, while the likes of James Holland, Tommy Oar and Nikita Rukavytsya will compete for berths in the starting line-up.
The Socceroos head into the clash full of confidence, having strengthened their hopes of qualifying for the 2014 World Cup with a memorable 2-1 win over Iraq in Doha.
Australia's bid to reach Brazil 2014 looked in tatters when Iraq took an unlikely 72nd-minute lead through substitute Alaa Abdul-Zahra.
But goals from Tim Cahill and Archie Thompson in the final 10 minutes saw the previously wasteful Australians secure their first win of the qualifying campaign.
Australia will host Oman at Sydney's ANZ Stadium in their next qualifier on March 26, when Osieck's men will look to cement themselves in second place Group B behind runaway leaders Japan.
Korea Republic are equal on points with Iran at the top of Group A and appear set to reach the World Cup finals for an eighth consecutive time.
Korea Republic beat Qatar and Lebanon to open their campaign, followed by a draw with Uzbekistan in Tashkent and last month's narrow loss to Iran in Tehran.
Coach Choi Kang-Hee has selected a squad comprising of Asian-based players, with stalwart Lee Dong-Gook the most notable inclusion after he was dropped for the journey to Iran.
The 33-year-old forward, who has 93 international caps to his name, returned to form with a flurry of goals for K-League club Jeonbuk Motors but is yet to fully impress Choi.
"He seems to have got back in shape in recent games," Choi told Yonhap. "(But) since I didn't name any players based in Europe, I didn't have any alternative."
Choi has added four uncapped players for the fixture as he explores his options ahead of Korea Republic's next World Cup qualifier at home to Qatar on March 26.
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