Defender Brad Smith is confident the Caltex Socceroos will take some valuable lessons from their loss against England into their upcoming fixtures against Greece on home soil.
The Socceroos were beaten 2-1 by the Three Lions on Saturday morning (AEST) with Manchester United pair Marcus Rashford and Wayne Rooney scoring in either half, before Eric Dier headed into his own net.
The match held special significance for Smith, who had played in England’s youth sides up until the U-20s due to his parents’ heritage, while he also came up against a number of his Liverpool teammates.
“It was obviously a big fixture when it was set out but all the boys were up for it and excited and the manager was up for it,” said Smith post-match.
“I thought we played really well, it was unlucky to get the defeat but that’s what we’re trying to do, that’s how we want to play.
“I think that’s what we need to do to push on and go forward.”
Those next steps will come against world no.37 Greece, with the Socceroos currently making the journey home for matches in Sydney (June 4) and Melbourne (June 7).
Smith said the squad would take a lot of confidence from their performance against the Three Lions as the Socceroos prepare for the final phase of AFC qualifying for the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
“That’s what the manager said before the game. You’ve got to believe in yourself because that’s what we can do and we did it out there,” said Smith.
“I think the manager will be quite pleased because that’s what he wants us to do.
“It was a disappointing to get the defeat but it’s a step in the right direction of where we want to go.”
Ange Postecoglou has played a number of left backs since his time in charge of the national team with Jason Davidson, Aziz Behich, James Meredith and Smith all getting an opportunity at various stages.
However Smith has now started in Australia’s last three internationals and was one of the best performers at the Stadium of Light, as he seeks to make the position his own.
“From the first time I came into camp all the boys made me comfortable,” said Smith.
“Everyone’s a bunch of Aussies aren’t they so everyone gets on well with each other.
“But you get more confident as you play and I think the team is progressing a lot and hopefully now I can nail down that spot and keep playing as much as possible.”