That's a Wrap: Subway Socceroos' equal strongest Asian Cup start headlines January

'That's a Wrap!' is here for another month as we look back at all the key things that happened across Australia's men's senior and junior national teams for January thanks to our Official Partner, Subway.

Subway Australia - Socceroos, That's A Wrap

Subway Socceroos defeat Bahrain in pre-Asian Cup friendly. 

READ MORE: Subway Socceroos earn a clean sheet win over Bahrain ahead of Asian Cup

Graham Arnold's 26-player-squad completed their final preparations for the AFC Asian Cup 2023 Qatar™ with a 2-0 victory against Bahrain in Abu Dhabi on the 6th, thanks to a goal from Mitchell Duke and a Bahrain own goal.

The major talking point from the match was the emergence of new stars including Gethin Jones, Kusini Yengi, and Jordan Bos, who have used the match as a platform for regular playing time during the Asian Cup.

 A strong victory over India to kick-off our Asian Cup.

The Subway Socceroos repeated the trick six days later in Doha, defeating a strong Indian side 2-0 during their first group stage tie, at the Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium, the ground where Australia defeated Peru on penalties and narrowly fell to world champions Argentina.

A 10th goal in green and gold for Jackson Irvine was what first separated the sides, before super-sub Jordan Bos popped up for the second, an incredible 30 seconds after being introduced to the game.


Footballing community mourns the passing of former Socceroo, Stephen Laybutt.

READ MORE: Football Australia mourns the passing of former Socceroo, Stephen Laybutt

Subway Socceroo #444 Stephen Laybutt was commemorated by those in the Australian footballing family, following the announcement of his passing. 

Laybutt made a significant impact with 18 appearances for the Socceroos, making his A International debut in early 2000 against Chile in Valparaiso, while also playing a prominent role for the Australian Olympic team, during their Sydney 2000 campaign.

Steve Laybutt of Australia tackles Tuncay Sanli of Turkey during the Australia v Turkey friendly international soccer match as part of the 2006 World Cup preparations at Aussie Stadium May 21, 2004

Subway Socceroos secure knockout progression after defeating Syria 1-0.

READ MORE: Socceroos make it two wins from two after Syria triumph

WATCH: Syria vs Australia Highlights

Australia's second group stage match saw the side traverse an old foe in Syria, having faced their opponent on three occasions, with a single goal being the largest margin of victory. Again the match was decided by one goal, with Jackson Irvine tapping home to continue his team's perfect tournament start.

A second clean sheet in two matches from Maty Ryan and his backline represented the best defensive start to an Asian Cup, with Australia never having entered their third group match, without conceding.


Subway Socceroos top Group B after 1-1 draw with Uzbekistan.

Australia finished top of their Asian Cup group for the first time in 13 years, while also equalling the highest tally of points (7) in the group stage, after drawing to group runners-up Uzbekistan.

Martin Boyle scored his first Asian Cup goal from the penalty spot, before Uzbekistan equalised via a late header. The match also saw a tournament debut for three up-and-coming stars, with Nathaniel Atkinson starting, while Lewis Miller and Marco Tilio made appearances off the bench.

A new national team record was broken in the 36th minute against Uzbekistan, as the current squad surpassed 609 minutes without conceding in all competitions, breaking the total set by the 2008 squad.

Subway Socceroos cruise into the quarter-finals after dominant Indonesia victory.

READ MORE: Subway Socceroos book quarter-final spot after strong Indonesia victory

WATCH: Australia vs Indonesia Highlights

Australia's last Asian Cup clash of the month saw Graham Arnold's men produce a clinic, defeating neighbours Indonesia 4-0, and in turn, locking in a quarter-final clash with South Korea.

An own goal early was built on later in the clash, with Martin Boyle's diving header producing the second, a volley from Craig Goodwin being the third, and a towering header in injury time by Harry Souttar completing the rout.


Aziz Behich announces loan move to Saudi Arabian side Al-Nassr.

READ MORE: Aziz Behich to join Al-Nassr on loan

The last headline came on the final day of the month, as Subway Socceroos' full-back Aziz Behich announced he would be spending the final six months of the season in the Saudi Pro League, with Al-Nassr.

Behich now has Cristiano Ronaldo, Sadio Mane, and Aymeric Laporte as his teammates, while left-sided international teammate Craig Goodwin will be his adversary, when Al-Nassr face Al-Wehda.

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Subway Australia - Socceroos, That's A Wrap