In 2014 FIFA World Cup is up for grabs and hosted by Brazil, the most successful country in football. The good thing is that Australia’s FIFA World Cup team managed to qualify for the tournament. The sure way of getting there was to be the first in qualification Asian group B, playing with Japan, Iraq, Jordan and Oman. For 2010 FIFA World Cup tournament in South Africa qualifications all went according to plan, but this time around Australia’s soccer team had a hard time beating Japan, which was the winner of Asian group B. In the first two matches, a slim win against Thailand and a loss against Oman, signals there might be problems. Then the draw against both Oman and Japan happened before Australia’s FIFA World Cup team losing to Jordan. Nevertheless, Australians lined up their troops and got on top of things, with Josh Kennedy scoring against Iraq for tickets to Brazil as a runner-up in Asian group B. Also changes in management were subsequently made, starting with dismissing coach Holder Osieck in October 2013 with Brisbane Roar, his predecessor. Holder’s time was upon him after a series of six losses against Brazil and France among others.
When talking about Australia’s team one name comes up again and again. If Portugal has Cristiano Rolando and if Argentina has Lionel Messi, Australia has Tim Cahill who is in the best shape of his life. Despite being of modest height, he has amiable heading strike ability every goalkeeper fear about. What he lack in height, he makes up by positioning himself perfectly whenever there’s a free strike or a corner ball coming his way. His stunning goal ratio is remarkable for a midfield player. Another name is the long time captain of Australian soccer team Lucas Neill who will again hold his team together in Brazil. Being a central defender, his goal will be that no matter what Australia’s net remains untouched. He is the leader you would like to have in the break keeping your motivation up. Despite being a midfielder, Brett Hotman displayed a versatility never before seen in Austalia’s FIFA World Cup team. In South Africa he scored two times and got to become known for his famous short passing game, the likes of which Barcelona’s team is currently playing. With former starts like Johnny Warren, Mark Viduka and Scott Chipperfield Australia has shown that it has, even in the past, some world renown players to count on for victories.
Australia first qualified for World Cup in 1974 and went home without a goal scored. They have come long way from those times. The Socceroos have proven themselves in Germany 2006 where the qualified for Round of 16. Their brilliance on that World Cup was met by future champions – Italy, which has serious problems defeating the Aussies and secured only a narrow win. In South Afrika 2010 they had a troublesome experience, getting beaten 4-0 and going home early. However, this time around they have come a long way from 2010, with an upgraded team and Ange Postecoglous as the head coach. It’s time they show the world what Australian soccer is really about.