The Socceroos’ roadmap to the 2015 AFC Asian Cup is taking shape with matches confirmed for the September and October international windows in Europe and the Middle East.
The Socceroos will play Belgium in Belgium on 4 September before taking on the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on 10 October and Qatar on 14 October, with both matches to be played in the Middle East.
Football Federation Australia (FFA) is also in negotiations for the Socceroos to play a second match in Europe during the September FIFA international window and two matches in Australia in November to finalise the program leading into January’s 2015 AFC Asian Cup.
The three confirmed matches give Ange Postecoglou and the Socceroos squad a good post World Cup test against 2014 FIFA World Cup quarter finalists Belgium as well as meaningful matches against fellow 2015 AFC Asian Cup countries Qatar and UAE.
“We have confirmed three opponents and hope to have three more games between now and the 2015 AFC Asian Cup, which gives us good preparation for what will be a challenging tournament on Australian soil in January,” Postecoglou said.
“Belgium will give us a good post-World Cup indication of how we are progressing and then we will get some good hit outs against Asian opposition to help us prepare tactically for the Asian Cup.”
Postecoglou also stated the matches would offer opportunities to continue the development of the Socceroos side following positive performances at the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
“Our performances in Brazil at the World Cup reaffirmed that we are moving in the right direction but it also showed we need to improve if we want to be regarded as one of the leading football nations, which is our ultimate target,” Postecoglou said.
“Our challenge going forward is to continue to improve as individuals and a team and to start converting our performances into results. These matches give us an opportunity to take further steps forward and prepare for success at the Asian Cup, which will be a wonderful tournament on Australian soil.”
All three matches will be broadcast LIVE and exclusive on FOX SPORTS.
Socceroos’ confirmed matches
4 September 2014 Belgium v Australia in Liege, Belgium
10 October 2014 UAE v Australia in the UAE
14 October 2014 Qatar v Australia in Qatar
Aussies Abroad: Sainsbury denies former club Inter in first UEFA Champions League start
Two Caltex Socceroos defenders were involved in key UEFA Champions League matches on Wednesday morning (AEDT). Milos Degenek’s Red Star Belgrade took on the might of Paris Saint Germain, featuring Neymar and Kylian Mbappe, while Trent Sainsbury went to former club Inter Milan
Aussies Abroad: Nabbout, Urawa Red Diamonds win Emperors Cup final
Andrew Nabbout emerged an Emperors Cup Final winner with Urawa Red Diamonds after the J-League outfit defeated Vegalta Sendai 1-0 yesterday evening. Nabbout was an unused substitute as the Reds clinched the trophy thanks to an early strike from Tomoya Ugajin. It is Urawa’s
'Amazing reward': Cahill to feature in FIFA World Football Museum
A pair of Tim Cahill’s boots will join items like the FIFA World Cup trophy, match balls from some of football’s biggest occasions and rare match-worn shirts in FIFA’s World Football Museum in Switzerland. The Caltex Socceroos legend revealed on Instagram on Sunday morning (AE
Boyle given 'all clear' following 'nasty collision'
Caltex Socceroos attacker Martin Boyle has been given the “all clear” following a head knock in Hibernian’s Scottish Premiership win at Hamilton Academical on Sunday morning (AEDT). Boyle needed lengthy treatment before half time after clashing with Hamilton’s Gary Woods and s