Socceroos ready to go again: Atkinson

Socceroos fullback Nathaniel Atkinson says his side are ready to dust themselves off and go again following their first up defeat to defending World Champions France in the opening match of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.

The Socceroos toiled and took a shock lead through Craig Goodwin but from there it was virtually one-way traffic with France’s undeniable quality evident for all to see.

Olivier Giroud scored a brace while Adrien Rabiot and Kylian Mbappe were also on target for Les Bleus.

READ MORE: FIFA World Cup Match Report: France 4 Australia 1
READ MORE: 'An incredibly proud moment': Craig Goodwin reacts to World Cup goal

Atkinson, who was one of three World Cup debutants to start in Australia’s back four and was tasked with marking French talisman Mbappe said there was plenty to take away from the match.

“It’s a good experience, obviously it’s an eye opener. There’s a reason why he’s earning 200 million dollars a year and I am where I am,” Atkinson said.

“It’s good to come up against this calibre, you know what you have to work on and I know what to fix, I’ve played that scenario 50 times over and I could probably come up with 50 different solutions, but that’s football.

“I’m disappointed, I’ll take full responsibility for the second goal, but it’s time to move on from that and the beauty is i’ve got a game in three days to fix that.

“That’s the beauty of the World Cup and just tournaments in general, anything can happen, you’ve just seen what the Saudis did against Argentina.


“We’ve come up against the World Champions and there’s a reason for that, they’re a good footballing team and we can take confidence from the way that we played in that game early on.”

The Socceroos will now look to regroup ahead of their second group match against Tunisia on Saturday night (AEDT).

Atkinson said his side had already begun to regroup as they prepare to bounce back in three days time.

“We’ve got a good mix of experienced players and young players and we’ve obviously got a lot of players here who are at their first World Cup,” Atkinson said.

“When I came into the change room my head was down but the first people to come up to me was the experienced players, who talked about their experiences but they said the beauty is in three days time we’ve got another game."

Match Details
FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ - Group D Matchday 2

Tunisia v Australia
Date: Saturday, 26 November 2022
Venue: Al Janoub Stadium, Al Wakrah
Kick-off: 9:00pm (AEDT)
Watch: LIVE and FREE on SBS and SBS On Demand

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