Socceroos can move up another gear in knockout stages says Boyle
With the knockout stages of the Asian Cup just days away, Australia has ramped up its training efforts as they prepare to take on Indonesia.
Forward Martin Boyle discussed how the group has spoken about the pressures on the squad and what is at stake in the Round of 16.
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“The first part of what we wanted to achieve, we've done, we wanted to top the group which we've managed,” he said.
“There's no room for error now straight to knockout football and every little mistake, we can be punished for it, so we know what we have to do, and we have to keep progressing.”
He was also confident that the players will be more than prepared for their opponent on Sunday.
“We'll identify their strengths and weaknesses in training, and you know we'll be fully prepped by the time the game comes,” he said.
Speaking on team performance, he feels the team has developed through the tournament and there is more to come from the players.
“We have another gear to step up and I feel like we are dominating the games, we are keeping control of the ball, and we are creating all the chances, I think we just need to be a bit more ruthless at the other end,” he said.
“I feel like we've been defensively really strong, which is key and hopefully we can be a bit more ruthless up top and pick teams away.”
As it is knockout football, preparing for penalty shootouts has been something the squad has been putting some time towards in training.
Boyle said: “We are in that elimination round now and we will take time after training to practice a bit.
“Ideally, we don't want any games to go to penalties, we want to qualify in the 90 minutes, but I think it's part and parcel of the game everyone needs to be prepared and I'm sure there'll be some sort of game plan.”
After scoring his first goal at an international tournament in Australia’s draw with Uzbekistan, Boyle said he wants to contribute with more goals, and he added that he is enjoying his time in Qatar.
“I'm really enjoying it, I've woke up every morning with a smile on my face and my family are buzzing, the teammates are really happy for me,” he said.
“Missing two tournaments was a major shock to me and I'm glad to be here and I'm glad to be contributing as well at the same time.
“Hopefully I can step up another gear and keep providing, it's nice to get a goal, so hopefully I can produce a lot more on that side of things."
AFC ASIAN CUP QATAR 2023™ ROUND OF 16
Australia v Indonesia
Sunday, 28 January 2024
Jassim Bin Hamad Stadium, Doha
Kick-off: 2:30pm local (10:30pm AEDT)
Broadcast: Network 10 and Paramount+
Every AFC Asian Cup Qatar 2023 match will be live on Paramount+