James Troisi is confident the Socceroos will no longer be as reliant on superstar Tim Cahill to provide goals, adamant they have the firepower and options for others to step up and share the load.
After going behind early against Kuwait on Friday night, it was Cahill who started the fightback, scoring the equalizer as Australia went on to win 4-1 in the Asian Cup opener.
It was Cahill’s 37th goal in a Socceroos jersey and ninth in 13 games since Ange Postecoglou took over the side.
There has been a feeling the Socceroos rely too heavily on Cahill to score and while admitting the veteran is still a key cog in the side, Troisi is adamant they have plenty of other avenues to goal.
“He’s a fantastic player and been an important part of the team for a very long time. We’re definitely going to use him as much as we can.
He’s our number 9, he’s our striker and he’s definitely going to be scoring goals,” Troisi said of Cahill.
“But it’s also good to see myself and Massimo, playing in that number 8 position, the midfielders are scoring goals as well.
“We’ve got plenty of creative, attacking ability and they are the guys that can score goals.”
Goal-keeper Mat Ryan added on Cahill:
“It’s just that x-factor about him, he just keeps popping up and providing for his country.
“He’s the type of person that wears his heart on his sleeve. But in saying that, it was nice for a few of the other boys to get on the scoresheet also.
“(Cahill’s) been the main man for some time now but to share the responsibility with the goals it’s nice for the team also.
“It was another test of our character coming from behind and I think it will bring the squad closer together again and there are better times ahead.”
Along with Cahill and Massimo Luongo, Troisi was a key part of the Socceroos’ fightback against Kuwait, and rated the performance Australia’s best under Postecoglou.
“Especially in the second half, everything came together,” he said.
“We were a little bit disappointed with the (Kuwait) goal, we will definitely work on that in the next couple of days. But we scored four goals so we can’t complain about that.”
Luongo and Troisi were perhaps surprise inclusions together in the midfield in front of skipper Mile Jedinak but justified their selections with a goal each and some exciting passages of paly.
While admitting he didn’t get much sleep on Friday night, man-of-the-match Luongo says his feet are back on the ground and he’s focused on proving to Postecoglou he deserves another start against Oman on Tuesday.
And he hopes the manner of the victory will set the tone on what could be a memorable three weeks for the Socceroos in front of their home fans.
“To fightback shows the desire in our team and what type of team we are and the character in our team,” the Swindon Town midfielder said.
“On home soil, the crowd got right behind us after that (Kuwait) goal. We looked around at out other teammates and we knew we were still in this, there was a long time to go until the final whistle.
“It’s a good base and a good foundation for the rest of the games. There’s still room for improvement, some errors to cut out and loads to move on from…we can only go up from here.”
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