Socceroos winger Chris Ikonomidis believes he has the confidence and energy to spark Australia’s Asian Cup campaign.
The defending champions made a poor start to their continental title defence with a 1-0 defeat against Jordan in Al Ain on Sunday.
The injury-hit Socceroos headed to Dubai on Monday ahead of their second group game in the city against Palestine on Friday.
Ikonomidis came on in the second half against Jordan and nearly snatched an equaliser for Graham Arnold’s men in the dying seconds of the match.
The 23-year-old forced his way into Arnold’s squad with his blistering A-League form, scoring six goals in nine appearances for Perth.
He then struck his first international goal in the 5-0 pre-tournament friendly win over Oman and will be pushing for a start against Palestine.
“I felt I added energy,” Ikonomidis said of his Jordan appearance.
“That was my mission.
“I feel comfortable. It’s my eighth game for Australia but I’ve been in countless camps and trained with the team for a long time so I know what’s expected to play at this level.”
Another second-half substitute against Jordan who is now in the frame for a starting role against Palestine is Jackson Irvine.
The England-based Irvine said he expects Palestine and final group stage opponents Syria to copy the tactics Jordan utilised to stymie Australia.
“We have to just try and be brave enough to keep playing our game and get through that,” Irvine said.
“At the end of the day, sometimes you need something to drop.
“Hitting the post, a couple of decisions that maybe didn’t go our way – they can be the difference.”