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Australia vs Palestine
2019 Asian Cup
|Khalifa bin Zayed Stadium, Al Ain|
The Socceroos have gone some of the way to atoning for Sunday’s shock loss to Jordan with a 3-0 victory over Palestine at the 2019 Asian Cup.
The Socceroos are out to get their Asian Cup defence back on track when they meet Palestine in their second tournament match. Join The Roar for live scores and a blog of the match from 10pm AEDT.
Australia suffered a shock 1-0 loss to Jordan in their Asian Cup opening match. It was a bitter blow to the Socceroos’ ambitions of keeping the trophy they won in 2015.
Graham Arnold’s men dominated possession against Jordan but started slowly and sloppily, and couldn’t break down a determined Jordanian defence that grew in confidence as the game wore on.
The Chivalrous played their rope-a-dope strategy perfectly and caught the green and gold napping at a corner to score.
The result was a wake-up call for the Socceroos and a reminder that Asian opposition won’t be easy to beat.
It won’t get any easier on Friday either with several injury concerns to contend with – Josh Risdon and Andrew Nabbout will likely miss the game, with Tom Rogic hampered by a broken bone in his hand.
Unlike Jordan, Australia and Palestine do not share a history on the football field. The two national teams have never met properly in an international match before.
The Lions of Canaan, ranked 99th in the world by FIFA, started their Asian Cup with a battling 0-0 draw with Syria. Considering they played 22 minutes with only 10 men, after Mohammed Saleh was sent off, it was some effort.
Palestine had never collected a point in an international tournament before, so history was made.
The Fedayeen will be expected to ‘do a Jordan’ against the Socceroos and park the bus. They did the same against Syria and it paid dividends.
It will be down to Arnold’s charges to break down the Palestine defence with speed, movement and class.
Jamie Maclaren is expected to start up front again, though Chris Ikonomidis may usurp Robbie Kruse’s place on the left wing.
Rhyan Grant will replace Risdon at right fullback, while Jackson Irvine is pushing for a starting spot in central midfield.
The Socceroos simply have to win, to not only save face but to stay alive in the Asian Cup. They are under the pump and will be extremely motivated to get the win they need.
Australia to win 3-0.
Join The Roar for live scores and a blog of the match from 10pm AEDT.
Where: Khalifa bin Zayed Stadium, Al Ain
When: 10pm AEDT
TV: Fox Sports
Betting: Australia $1.20, Draw $4, Palestine $11