The Qantas Young Socceroos are set for the defining test of their 2013 FIFA U-20 World Cup campaign and are willing and eager for the challenge.
The Qantas Young Socceroos will face the defining test of their 2013 FIFA U-20 World Cup campaign on Saturday and are willing and eager for the challenge.
The challenge is significant; to beat Turkey, the host nation.
The equation is simple; only a win will do for the Qantas Young Socceroos should they hope to continue their journey at this tournament.
The reward is tremendous; to become the first Australian team to qualify for the knockout stages of a FIFA U-20 World Cup since 2003.
It-s a scenario deserving of the stage that only a World Cup can provide and the Australian camp is desperate to make sure their World Cup experience doesn-t end at the Hüseyin Avni Aker Stadium tomorrow evening.
“We can-t wait for the game, we knew that the game against Turkey was going to be a massive game - it-s turned out to be the game breaker,” said Qantas Young Socceroos Head Coach Paul Okon.
“We can win the game and go through to the next round on the back of, I think, a solid performance (against El Salvador), although the result went against us.
“We set the bar ever so high after the first game (against Colombia), we-d be really sad if we weren-t able to get to a similar performance because we know that-s what-s needed to beat a team like Turkey.”
After beginning their campaign with a head-turning 1-1 draw against tournament heavyweights Colombia, Australia come into tomorrow-s match on the back of a disappointing 2-1 defeat at the hands of El Salvador on Tuesday (Wednesday morning AEST).
That defeat sees Australia occupy bottom place in their group, but with potentially three teams to qualify from Group C, the Qantas Young Socceroos know that a win against Turkey will almost certainly seal their passage to the knockout rounds.
Trabzon-s 25,000-seater Stadium is expected to welcome a tournament-high number of local supporters for tomorrow-s fixture - the virtual knock out clash attracting significant interest from Turkish media and fans alike.
“That-s why you come to these tournaments, to play in front of full stadiums,” said Okon.
“Everyone was really pleased that we got the hosts, the first two games haven-t been packed houses, this game obviously will be because of what-s at stake.
“The Turkish public, they turn very quickly on their team if they-re not playing well or they haven-t scored a goal - we know that.
“We know the challenge that we face and I-m sure that the boys will relish playing against Turkey.”
The Qantas Young Socceroos will tackle hosts Turkey in their final Group C match at the 2013 FIFA U-20 World Cup at Trabzon's Huseyin Avni Aker Stadium on Friday, 28 June at 9pm local time (Saturday, 29 June 4am AEST).
Watch all the Qantas Young Socceroos matches at the 2013 FIFA U-20 World Cup, plus the Semi-Finals and Final, live and exclusive on SBS TV and streamed online at www.theworldgame.com.au.
Progress report: Mark Milligan
With the AFC Asian Cup appearing quickly on the horizon, we’re delivering weekly scouting reports on some of our Caltex Socceroos playing abroad. This week the spotlight is on Mark Milligan, an experienced member of the national team who has made a flawless start to life in Eu
Caltex Socceroos meet young Aussie ‘Playmakers’ in the UAE
The Caltex Socceroos took time out after training to meet with some young Australian fans in the United Arab Emirates last week ahead of Monday’s solid 4-0 win over Kuwait in Kuwait City. The young Australians, who live in the UAE, are part of the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019’s Play
‘An amazing story’: Patrice Evra leads social media tributes to Mabil, Deng debuts
There was a lot to like about the Caltex Socceroos win over Kuwait on Tuesday (AEDT) but arguably the biggest highlight was the international debuts of youngsters Awer Mabil and Thomas Deng. The pair were both second-half substitutes and combined on the right flanks, with Mabi
Stats review: Breaking down the Caltex Socceroos win over Kuwait
The Caltex Socceroos made a blistering start to the Graham Arnold era on Tuesday morning (AEDT) with their emphatic 4-0 win over Kuwait. The performance and result not only made a big statement of what this Australian team is set to deliver under their new boss, but also snapp