There are three A-League players who must be in the Socceroos’ squad for the World Cup and they’re all forwards.
Postecoglou’s squad for the match against Ecuador contains three forwards.
There is Ben Halloran, who is a really a winger, Tim Cahill, who is definitely a central midfielder, and Mathew Leckie, who is the in-fashion German prototype of a forward.
Leckie is not quite a striker, and not quite a winger, similar to Robbie Kruse, Andre Schurrle and Marco Reus.
Thus, the squad has more or less three quarters of a forward rather than three.
If Josh Kennedy, who really doesn’t fit in with Postecoglou’s revered style, is picked then the Socceroos will struggle to play like Postecoglou’s former team the Brisbane Roar.
As a side note, for all the A-League’s faults, the Socceroos are now trying to mimic a team from the A-League, rather than the EPL, La Liga or Eredivisie.
The Socceroos aren’t going to Brazil to park the bus, which is ironic because Postecoglou said they’d be happy to play in a car park.
The team is going to have to pressure their opponents until they cough up a goal.
However, in the squad that was picked for the friendly against Ecuador, no player is a goal scorer.
Cahill scored 11 goals in the MLS in 2013 and Leckie has six this season in the 2. Bundesliga.
Given the MLS is only a few imports better than the A-League, Cahill’s goal haul does not hold much more merit than Adam Taggart’s, David Williams’ or James Troisi’s respective totals.
The three players have 29 goals between them (ten, ten and nine, respectively) and they’ve all played less games than Cahill did in the MLS (albeit as midfielder).
David Williams and James Troisi represent what we’ve lost with Kruse’s ACL injury.
They can play midfield but that isn’t a euphemism for “barely scores”.
They’re quick and are in form.
Adam Taggart is more of solid striker, who is holding off Emile Heskey for the Newcastle Jet’s number nine position.
He is the player that the recently-announced squad lacks, a guy who doesn’t use a thesaurus to describe his position.
He doesn’t have a dodgy touch and he’s the equal-leading goalscorer in the A-League this season.
For that reason he would be perfect for Postecoglou’s squad.
David Williams is the player that will dribble directly at defenders, shrug them off, and blast the ball out of reach of the opposition’s goalkeeper.
Cahill won’t do that and Leckie isn’t a certainty to do it either.
Williams is a form player and he’s the “YOLO” factor that Australia need.
Otherwise the Socceroos will fly all the way to Brazil to be polite and thank Spain and Holland for giving them the opportunity to kick the same ball.
That’s not good enough.
The Socceroos should pressure their opponents until the ball falls out to Williams in space so he can crack one past Dutch goalkeeper Jasper Cillessen or Spanish goalkeeper Iker Casillas.
James Troisi is Australia’s most cultured player.
He speaks like a second-generation Greco-Italian, who holidayed in northern England for too long and grew up in Australia.
He also plays like one.
Troisi is technically adept enough for Italian clubs Juventus and Atlanta to share his ownership and he can score a goal.
He also played under Postecoglou and he is the definition of the false nine that Postecoglou is renowned for.
No Australian player in the current squad, or out of it, have the goals and the form that Taggart, Williams and Troisi have.
Australia can’t defend for 90 minutes against David Silva, Rafael van der Vaart or Alexis Sanchez.
Nor can they punt long balls forward to Kennedy and Cahill.
Troisi, Taggart and Williams must go to the World Cup, otherwise the Socceroos will be scraping the half-finished Brazilian barrel to score a goal.