I was planning to write a review of how I thought the Socceroos played in their first match against Germany. Now there seems little point. We lost. Forget about it. Move on.

We played badly and I think we deserved what we got. But let’s not forget who the opposition was. Germany are a truly world class side, and while I hoped for a better result than 4-0, I didn’t expect us to win. I think the realists among us had accepted that a loss was the most likely outcome. Of course, this now means that we probably need to win both of our remaining games to progress to the knockout rounds.

Let’s be honest, it’s a huge challenge. There is now zero room for error. A draw in either game is not good enough. We need to win both. On balance, the likelihood is that we will not progress, but there is yet hope. Neither Serbia nor Ghana is an opponent beyond Australia, so it’s still possible and we hope for the best.

Let’s break it down a little further. Consider the match against Serbia. At the time of writing, Serbia is in a worse position than us. They have also lost their opening game and they still have to play Germany. Serbia is our last group match and in all probability, it’s quite likely that by that stage Serbia will be completely out of the running. That gives us a much greater chance of winning. So Serbia is a winnable game.

Now consider our next match against Ghana. Ghana is a formidable opponent, and with a win over Serbia to open their campaign, they will be in a confident and positive frame of mind. But by no stretch of the imagination is a win beyond Australia.

Australia has a strong record against Ghana, having played on six previous occasions, returning four wins, a draw and a loss. More importantly, the two sides have met twice in the past five years. In 2006, John Aloisi put Australia deservedly ahead before an unfortunate situation gave Ghana an easy equaliser. In 2008, Mile Sterjovski earned a 1-0 win for Australia. Whilst you can never read too much into friendly results and the squads for both of these encounters were very different to the current squads, these results demonstrate that a win clearly achievable for the Socceroos.

A 4-0 pasting by Germany makes it look like doom and gloom for Australia. But remember that most people expected Germany to win this game and the main disappointment was the margin. Australia now has to win both of its remaining games to progress and it’s a very difficult task. But take a closer look, and it’s not beyond us.

To look a little further into the future, I am intending to take a look at some of the younger members of Australia’s squad who might form the backbone of our next World Cup squad, so if you’re interested, keep an eye out.

New South Wales have won the 2018 State of Origin series with an 18-14 win in an absolutely outstanding Game 2 at ANZ Stadium. See how the action unfolded with our NSW vs QLD Origin 2 scores, highlights and blog.

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The Crowd Says (1)

  • June 15th 2010 @ 1:18am
    toeslayer said | June 15th 2010 @ 1:18am | ! Report

    Enjoyed your commentary. Australia did come up against a formidable component and were taught a valuable lesson. The competition is not over yet and the Aussies can and should rise above their initial loss. Mark Schwarzer played impecably and without him on his current form Australia could have gone down by a lot more. Some of the squad are veterans now and the need to bring through younger talent was made ever more obvious by the tardy defending and slow responses to speady attackers. I am sure Tim Cahill now realises the seriousness of foul play and its consequences. He has been crusing for a send off for sometime and choose the moment well to drop his team mates right in it. However the squad should now settle to enjoy the first leg of the competition and if they do not get through well there is always 2014. Meantime they should demonstrate the skills they have and entertain the crowd.

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