Robbie Kruse says the Qantas Socceroos don't fear Japan, while Sasa Ognenovski is using the last Asian Cup final as motivation to beat the Blue Samurai.
Defender Sasa Ognenovski says the Qantas Socceroos possess extra motivation for Tuesday night's World Cup qualifier against Japan, as frustration remains from their Asian Cup final defeat.
It is expected that much of the team who failed to secure three points against Oman will take the field as they take on a Blue Samurai side who have thumped Oman 3-0 and Jordan 6-0, but Ognenovski is confident.
"For the ones that played, of course, there's that motivating factor there as well,'' he said.
"We felt as though we should have won that (final) so, hopefully, we can get that result on Tuesday.''
But they have to overcome an unhelpful travel schedule and a confident Japan who boast a star trio in Manchester United-bound Shinji Kagawa, Inter Milan's Yuto Nagamoto and CSKA Moscow striker Keisuke Honda, who bagged a hat-trick against Jordan.
Despite the strong line-up Japan are fielding Qantas Socceroos striker Robbie Kruse says the team won-t be fearing a Japan side who have been rampant in their opening two matches against Oman and Jordan.
“They have some wonderful individual players that we have to be aware of, and it-s going to be vital for us to shut down their attacking players.” Kruse said.
"We feel we've got the firepower to beat Japan and it's been a pretty good battle over the last four or five years.
"We respect them but we don't fear them.”
While the Socceroos might not fear them, Kruse does realise it is important to strike quickly and not let Japan get a roll on, because if they do that is when Manchester United-bound Shinji Kagawa could strike, and Kruse has seen plenty of that throughout his time in Germany.
“I think in any game it-s always important to try and get an early goal, we don-t want Japan to get the first goal because they have a wonderful array of talent there, especially with Shinji Kagawa.”
“I play in Germany so I see a lot of Kagawa and he-s since moved to Manchester United, so obviously he is a wonderful player.”
The match gives Kruse the opportunity to get back in front of his home crowd and for Ognenovski to get back in front of some of the fans who cheered him when he played at the Roar and the defender is looking forward to the opportunity.
“Playing in front of your home crowd is a big difference, they can really lift you and being at a noisy Suncorp will be a big difference,” Ognenovski said.
Aussies Abroad: Two-year Danish Superliga record falls as Mabil's Midtjylland lose to Brondby
Awer Mabil’s hopes of clinching the Danish Superliga title with FC Midtjylland suffered a blow after a 2-1 loss to Brondby earlier this morning. Marc Dal Hende opened the scoring early for Midtjylland, but a swift equaliser from Simon Hedlund and a deflected winner from Jens M
Former Caltex Socceroos striker announces retirement
Former Caltex Socceroos forward and Adelaide United legend Bruce Djite has announced his retirement from football. Djite, 32, was most recently playing for Indonesian club PSM Makassar before returning to Australia last year. “I’ve had a few opportunities come up that inter
Aussies Abroad: Milligan and Rogic locked in Scotland, big wins for Amini and Giannou
Tom Rogic and Mark Milligan locked horns as the Scottish Premier League's runaway leaders, Celtic, were held by Hibernian in a stalemate at Easter Road. The Caltex Socceroo pair shared the pitch for around ten minutes as steely midfielder Milligan bustled for 70 minutes, while
Aussies Abroad: Ryan clean sheet puts Brighton in reach of safety
It may be an Easter long-weekend but that does not mean there is any less action for our overseas Caltex Socceroos. A clean sheet from Mat Ryan helped secure a vital point for Brighton & Hove Albion in the race for English Premier League survival, as they held Wolverhampton Wa