Socceroos try to stop World Cup history repeating itself as the ghosts of 2010 emerge | Australia

joyfulhis World Cup is starting to feel a bit like South Africa 2010. Australia’s 4-1 humble The possession of France in Qatar on Wednesday evokes a similarly ominous feeling 12 years ago when Australia began its campaign with a 4-0 hit against Germany in Durban.

Under the tutelage of the late Pim Verbeek, the team rebounded in a 1-1 draw with Ghana despite Harry Kewell’s early red card and defeated Serbia 2-1. But it was damaged in the first match. Too many goals were sent and they finished their group in third place with goal difference.

Today’s Socceroos find themselves in a comparable position and are now faced with the daunting task of climbing back the hill where France threw them to stop history repeating itself.

«Of course now the stakes are higher for game two,» midfielder Jackson Irvine said the day after the opening. «But at the end of the day, you know you need two positive outcomes to move forward, and we’re still confident that it’s achievable.»

Graham Arnold’s team is in a marginally more promising position than the class of 2010, with a goal in their favor thanks to the Craig Goodwin striker who made the country believe – for a nice 18 minutes – defending champions may be upset.

What this means is that they beat Tunisia in their second match on Saturday and at the same time they have to pray for France to score another hatful against Denmark, who were tied 0-0 by less eager Tunisia in the opening match. This would put Australia He is in a positive position as he enters his third and final match against Denmark next Wednesday.

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This is a World Cup like no other. For the past 12 years, The Guardian has been reporting on issues surrounding Qatar 2022, from corruption and human rights abuses to the treatment and discriminatory laws against migrant workers. The best of our journalism is gathered in our dedicated articles. Qatar: Beyond Football home page for those who want to delve deeper into issues beyond the field.

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With world number 30 tied with Tunisia, beating Denmark is the minimum requirement plus the situation is more difficult in hopes that other results don’t go your way. One loss effectively marks the end of the Qatar 2022 campaigns.

In short, the team has two days to prepare for the Tunisians who have not played since their 2-0 Confederations Cup defeat in 2005. of an immigrant community of 55,000 people in Qatar. It could create a hostile atmosphere at Al Janoub Stadium, where Australia plays all three of its group fixtures.

Mile Jedinak, Carl Valeri and Nikita Rukavytsya after defeating Germany at the 2010 World Cup.
Mile Jedinak, Carl Valeri and Nikita Rukavytsya after defeating Germany at the 2010 World Cup. Photo: Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

But right now the priority for players is to mentally move away from the heartbreaking loss to France, which Arnold calls «bigger, faster and stronger». Irvine said it’s still «pretty raw» but starting to shift the group’s focus to their next opponent.

«The important thing is to use last night as a platform to build on Saturday, rather than overthinking how the game is going,» Irvine said. “There are lessons to be learned tactically. We need to defend the crosses better – conceding three goals from the wide fields is a very clear lesson for us to learn.

«Earlier in the game, when we were on the front line, we looked at a completely different threat. Obviously, especially when playing against players at this speed, you have to be aware of the individual quality of the opponent – ​​you don’t want to leave too much space behind. But that’s where we were most happy when we played with the front foot, when we were high-pressing.»

Led by Captain Youssef Msakni, Tunisia, both offensively and defensively, paired with 10th-placed Denmark, creating chances and targeting Christian Eriksen. This performance will increase confidence that the team can make it to the qualifying stage after five unsuccessful attempts.

“This will obviously be a very different opposition; the game will flow in a completely different way,” said Irvine.

«We have quality players who can play wide or between the lines and create chances to score. We’ll look at where the best areas are to hurt them, but within the framework we’ve always tried to do, it won’t change much.»

The key for Australia may be offensive player Ajdin Hrust, who has not played since 3 October due to an ankle injury and has not been used against France, but can still play a crucial role in this match.

«He’s a quality player, obviously we want him to come out as soon as he’s available,» Irvine said. «I’m sure he will have a big role to play in these next few games.»

Hrustic player profile

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