Socceroo history: our last three games against China

Socceroos striker Tomi Juric shoots on goal against China at the 2013 East Asian Cup.
A sensational atmosphere awaits in Brisbane on Thursday night as our Socceroos take on the impressive China in the quarter-finals of the AFC Asian Cup. And we cannot wait.

These two nations have been involved in some massive games in the past but none with so much riding on it as this one at Brisbane Stadium.

Ahead of this blockbuster encounter, take a look back at the last three meetings between Australia and China, which has seen the Chinese triumph on two occasions.

Australia 3-4 China

July 28, 2013 in Seoul

Australia’s first appearance at the East Asian Cup might have ended without a win but included a seven-goal thriller with the Chinese in Seoul. Holger Osieck’s experimental and largely locally-based side made a slow start, going behind after just four minutes through a goal to Yu Dabao. The Socceroos drew level just before the half hour mark when then-Western Sydney Wanderers FC midfielder Aaron Mooy let fly with a thunderbolt from 30 metres out.

The gripping contest stayed level until 10 minutes into the second half when China edged in front thanks Sun Ke’s strike. Two goals in two minutes by Yang Xu and Wu Lei with just 10 minutes left gave China an unassailable 4-1 advantage before the Socceroos salvaged some pride either side of injury-time as Adam Taggart and Mitchell Duke got their name on the scoresheet.

The match was also the international debuts for Newcastle Jets pair Josh Brillante and goal-keeper Mark Birighitti.

Australia 0-1 China

June 22, 2008 in Sydney

With the Socceroos already assured of progression to the next stage of FIFA World Cup qualifying, it was a youthful, inexperienced and largely Hyundai A-League-based side that was selected by coach Pim Verbeek.

The likes of Nikolai Topor-Stanley, Ruben Zadkovich, Matthew Spiranovic, Kristian Sarkies and Bruce Djite were all given a run as Verbeek relied predominantly on Olympic under-23 squad members.

But with more than 70,000 fans inside Stadium Australia, the move back-fired as an early Sun Xiang goal gave the visitors a 1-0 win. A missed penalty by China’s current-day skipper Zheng Zhi denied them an even bigger victory but they held on to consign the Green and Gold to their first World Cup qualifying defeat on home soil in 27 years.

China 0-0 Australia 

March 26, 2008 in Kunming

The Chinese were in camp for about a month in the lead and tried all the tricks to gain an advantage, playing the match in the altitude of Kunming. And it almost paid off as only a late penalty save by the brilliant Mark Schwarzer enabled Australia to escape with a hard-earned point.

Schwarzer looked like being the villain after bringing down Qu Bo in the box two minutes from time but redeemed himself by saving Shao Jiayi’s weak spot-kick. Injuries to a host of key strikers blunted the Socceroos attack and their cause wasn’t helped when Archie Thompson was forced off inside 10 minutes.
But they dug in and defended stoutly to escape with a point in a hostile and tricky environment.

The Socceroos will face China PR in the Quarter-Finals of the AFC Asian Cup at Brisbane Stadium on Thursday 22 January (8.30pm local kick off). Click here to purchase tickets.

Source : Football Federation Australia website

Mile Jedinak’s return lifts Socceroos, says Mathew Leckie

January 20, 2015 – 5:35PM

Steve Larkin

Skipper Mile Jedinak is back on duty.

Skipper Mile Jedinak is back on duty. Photo: Getty Images

Attacking ace Mathew Leckie says the Socceroos will get a massive boost from captain Mile Jedinak’s return, as they prepare for a Chinese burn in their Asian Cup quarter-final.

Jedinak was to train with his teammates on Tuesday for the first time since suffering an ankle injury 11 days ago in the tournament opener.

The midfielder has missed the past two games but will be a key plank in Australia’s plan to counter expected squeezing tactics from China in Thursday’s knockout match in Brisbane.

“It will be tough for the other team to deal with, knowing that our captain is back,” Leckie said on Tuesday. “He’s a strong presence in the midfield, he breaks down a lot of play, and I think it will be a massive boost for all of us.

“He has done so well this year and I’m sure the opposition will know that as well. So when they see him coming back, they will be worried.”

Leckie hailed Jedinak’s leadership off the pitch, as well as on.

“He is always there in the change rooms and also in training making sure you’re on your toes,” he said. “And he’s also there to give you advice and boost your confidence – a great guy, you can always sit down with him and have a chat when you need to.

“He is a great leader and he has been a great player as well.”

The Socceroos on Tuesday started an in-depth study of China, who have surprised pundits with three consecutive group-stage wins after entering the tournament seemingly in a rebuilding phase.

The Australians believe the visitors will sit back on a scrappy Suncorp Stadium surface and try to suffocate the Socceroos before hitting on the counter-attack.

“We see that they’re pretty compact, disciplined,” Leckie said. “So we know that although the conditions aren’t as good as Melbourne – it’s obviously a little bit hotter here and there have obviously been problems with the pitch as well – we have still got to continue trying to keep the ball moving.

“We know they’re going to stay compact and work really hard, so we have got to move them around the pitch.”

Socceroos coach Ange Postecoglou is tipped to make five changes to his starting line-up for the final.

Jedinak will return, with Leckie, Tim Cahill and Robbie Kruse all expected to start. The latter trio came from the bench in the defeat against South Korea last Saturday night.

Defender Alex Wilkinson will come into the side to replace suspended centre-back Matthew Spiranovic.


Source : The Canberra Times

Asian Cup: Honda-powered Japan cruise past Jordan into quarter-finals

January 21, 2015 – 12:39AM

Michael Lynch

Senior sports reporter with The Age

Japan 2 Jordan 0

Jordan's Monther Abu Amara and JapanÂ?s Keisuke Honda compete for the ball during the Asia Cup match on Tuesday.

Jordan’s Monther Abu Amara and Japan’s Keisuke Honda compete for the ball during the Asian Cup match on Tuesday. Photo: AP

Japan coach Javier Aguirre was true to his word and played his stars in their final Group D game against Jordan, determined to maintain his team’s 100 per cent Asian Cup record.

They did, seeing off the challenge of the plucky Jordanians 2-0 through a first-half goal from AC Milan’s Keisuke Honda and a second by former Manchester United mifielder Shinji Kagawa at  AAMI Park on Tuesday night.

The result was never in doubt, but after dominating the first half the reigning champions were occasionally given something to think about during the second period by a Jordan side that lifted its work-rate and effort and tried to create something for itself as it battled to defy the odds.

Shinji Kagawa (left) gets Japan's second goal with eight minutes left in the game.Shinji Kagawa (left) gets Japan’s second goal with eight minutes left in the game. Photo: Reuters

The Blue Samurai easily had the better of the opening exchanges as they cranked up the pressure and the Jordanians sat deep in a bid to frustrate them.

Japan looked as though they had taken the lead after 10 minutes when striker Takashi Inui lashed home a fierce first-time shot from a Kagawa cross, only for Uzbek referee Ravshan Irmatov to rule it out, the ball having fractionally gone out of play before Kagawa sent his delivery over.

It was only postponing the inevitable, however. A drive by Masato Morishige was well blocked by Anas Bani Yaseen while goalkeeper Amer Shafi kept out Keisuke Honda’s optimistic long-range free-kick.

Japan got their noses in front in the 24th minute and it was Honda who was the man on the spot to slide the ball home from close range after Shafi had palmed out Shinji Okazaki’s shot.

Jordan was stuggling to get the ball into any threatening areas. Hamza Al Dardour, who had made a name for himself in the 5-1 win over Palestine last Friday, could barely get on the ball as most of Jordan’s forward thrusts were snuffed out early by the Japanese midfielders or defence.

The youngster did get one run through, but his shot was deflected. At the other end Shafi made a tremendous save to deny Morishige’s header from a corrner while Okazaki went close as the half drew to a close with a strong run, and shot into the side netting.

Jordan began the second half in spirited fashion. With elimination looming they had nothing to lose.

Substitute Monther Abu Amara, who had come on at the interval, immediately made an impact, creating space for himself to fire in a shot that goalkeeper Eiji Kawashimi had to dive to save at the near post.

While the score stayed at 1-0, Jordan would always have given themselves a chance of pulling off a major shock but it was Japan who put the match to bed with eight minutes remaining, Shafi fumbling Kagawa’s shot after the midfielder had been set up by a cross from substitute Yoshinori Muto.

The gulf in class and quality was always too great for the men from the Middle East, and Japan now face the UAE in the quarter-finals.


Source : The Brisbane Times

Ivan Franjic says Socceroos will win quarter-final to make up for South Korea defeat at Suncorp Stadium

January 20, 2015 – 5:24PM

Phil Lutton sports editor

Taking full responsibility: Ivan Franjic and fellow Socceroos after losing to South Korea.

Taking full responsibility: Ivan Franjic and fellow Socceroos after losing to South Korea. Photo: Getty Images

Ivan Franjic has plenty of good memories at Suncorp Stadium but has vowed to make up for a bad one when Australia meet China in the Asian Cup quarter-finals on Thursday night.

The right-back has taken the blame for the goal conceded against South Korea in their final pool game on the weekend, which saw the home side lose 1-0 and remain in Brisbane to face the Chinese, who have won all three of their matches in the group stage.

Franjic, who plays his football with Torpedo Moscow but could return on loan to the A-League, said he felt he should have organised the defence with more authority as Korea’s Lee Jeong-hyeop split a gap between defenders to score from a corner.

It’s a rare blemish for Franjic on his former home ground, where he celebrated three grand final victories with the Brisbane Roar before heading to Russia after the end of last season.

“We dissected the whole match the next day. It was disappointing and I’ll take full responsibility for the goal, because maybe I should have stayed in,” Franjic said.

“It’s happened now but it was disappointing the way we conceded because they had 10 men on the pitch as well.

“It’s a setpiece and we all had our man. I take full responsibility. Being a right-back I should have organised it better, and it would probably never have happened.”

With direct competitor Aston Villa defender Chris Herd out of the tournament with an Achilles injury, Franjic is one of the few Socceroos who can almost bank on selection for the quarter-final.

He said he wasn’t taking anything for granted, given Ange Postecoglou’s tendency to change things up, but felt strong, despite a lack of club football, and was prepared to play long minutes throughout the tournament.

“You never take selection for granted, especially in the Socceroos, because he [Ange] can change anything. It was disappointing to see Herdy go home because he’s a great player and he would have played a couple of games as well,” Franjic said.

“I came back early [from Russia] and worked with a conditioning coach, and made sure I was ready for times like this. I feel good, my body feels good, I’m happy with where I’m at.”

Such is Franjic’s devotion to the Socceroos that his club career in Moscow remains uncertain, with the 27-year-old electing to put all of his energies towards the Socceroos as they try to win a major trophy on home soil.

“I had an operation after the World Cup and I finally came back and started playing a few games [at Torpedo Moscow], then the coach got sacked,” Franjic said.

“It was a choice between playing for my country and staying with my new coach and doing 10 days’ preparation. I always put my country first before any club.

“Right now my only focus is on the Socceroos. As far as I know I’m a Torpedo Moscow player and all my focus is on Thursday night on the Socceroos.”

The Socceroos have completed their video reviews of Team Dragon, with Franjic expecting them to sit back then run-and-gun against the Socceroos.

The Chinese played some impressive football in their pool game against Uzbekistan in Brisbane, having no trouble with the questionable surface and showing pace and touch down the wings.

Franjic knows he could be in for a busy evening, with China also likely to get a huge turnout of fans after a strong showing during the group stages.

“They’re good on the ball and they try to play football. I think they’ll drop off and let us play and try to hit us on the break,” Franjic said.


Source : The Brisbane Times

Ange Postecoglou v Alain Perrin: your dugout dossier

Socceroos boss Ange Postecoglou and Chinese coach Alain Perrin.

One’s coached in the English Premier League; one’s coached at a World Cup and won numerous Australian trophies. The Socceroos versus China may be won on the pitch but from the dugout these two wily coaches will be pulling strings to engineer a famous win for their nation in Thursday’s knockout Asian Cup quarter-final at Brisbane Stadium.

Ange Postecoglou and Alain Perrin are two of the better credentialed coaches at the tournament so it’s no surprise their sides have reached the knockout stage.

The tactical battle and contrast of styles will be fascinating to watch, as well as just what 11 they will go with in the hot and steamy conditions on Brisbane’s bumpy pitch.

How does Postecoglou break down China’s organised defensive wall while keeping his own back-door firmly shut?

Can China deal with the aerial ability of Tim Cahill and the pace and power of Leckie and Kruse?

Interestingly, Perrin was once linked with the Sydney FC job and has coached Aussie player Nick Carle.

Will Perrin be known as the coach who beat the Socceroos on home soil? Or will Postecoglou’s men bounce back after their group stage loss to Korea Republic and storm into the semis?


Postecoglou – 49 (Born August 27, 1965)

Perrin – 58 (Born October 7, 1956)

Bluffer’s Guide

Perrin undertook a pretty long apprenticeship before taking a senior managerial role. He spent almost a decade – including a stint at Arsene Wenger’s assistant at Nancy – as a youth and assistant coach before taking charge of Troyes in the French fourth division and taking them all the way to Ligue 1 with three promotions in six seasons.

Having helped the unfashionable club qualify for the Europe, he caught the attention of French giants Marseille and while he signed Didier Drogba to the club, success didn’t follow.

His impact at Portsmouth in 2005 was better, taking over with the club in serious relegation trouble and helping them avoid the drop. While it didn’t end well – he was sacked early the following season – his reputation didn’t diminish and he returned to France with Sochaux and then Lyon where he guided both clubs to silverware.

He would have learned a lot from his five year stint in middle east football and is using all his experience to perhaps be the man to help China reach their scary potential.

In 13 games in charge of China, Perrin has tasted defeat just once.

Athens-born Postecoglou might not have the same calibre of clubs on his resume but has enjoyed huge success almost everywhere he has managed.

He led South Melbourne too back-to-back NSL titles in the late 90s as well as seeing them take on the likes of Manchester United at the FIFA Club World Cup in 2000 (as a result of an Oceania Club Championship triumph a year earlier).

He really made his name in Australia as boss of Brisbane Roar FC. Postecoglou helped transform the club from an also-ran of the A-League to the most successful club in the league’s history.

His back-to-back championship winning success included an Australian sporting record 36-game unbeaten run playing the type of total football that had the team nicknamed “Roarcelona”.

It’s still early days in his international coaching career but after a difficult first 12 months, things are certainly looking up. An Asian Cup trophy on home soil would be a nice building block for this evolving side heading towards the start of qualifying for the 2018 World Cup.

Asian Cups

This is both men’s first appearance as manager at and Asian Cup. Perrin has made the perfect start with three wins from three matches while Postecoglou’s Socceroos won their first two games in a comfortable manner before losing their last match 1-0 to Korea Republic.


Postecoglou started his club coaching career in the old NSL at South Melbourne, in charge for four years at the club where he also spent all of his time as a player.

After a long stint as coach of Australia’s youth teams, he returned to club coaching with Panachaiki in Greece but was only there a year before returning to Australia to take charge of Brisbane Roar FC. It was here Postecoglou had enormous success, guiding the club to back-to-back Hyundai A-League championships.

He then had just over a season with Melbourne Victory before taking over the Socceroos job.

Frenchman Perrin started his top-flight managerial career in his home nation at Troyes with a reputation of being brilliant in youth development. It was there he coached Sydney FC’s Nick Carle, who has since raved about the French coach’s quality.

Perrin had stints at Marseille and Al Ain before taking over EPL club Portsmouth in 2005 and helping them avoid relegation (along the way he guided Pompey to a famous 4-1 demolition of local rivals Southampton, though he was sacked within his first year at the club).

Success followed at his next post back in France with Sochaux, guiding the club to the French Cup before joining Lyon in 2007 and taking them to the league and cup-double the next season.

He has spent the last five years in Asian football, working with three different Qatari clubs (Al-Khor), Al Gharafa and Umm Salal before winning the China post came along


Postecoglou has had a pretty clear approach right throughout his coaching career and hasn’t wavered since taking charge of the Socceroos. He wants his teams to be positive, pro-active and always looking for goals. Press high and play the game in their half is his mantra. Above all, be positive and back yourself.

While it hasn’t always led to results during this re-generation period of the national team, it’s thrilling to watch.

Postecoglou’s high-press, all-action style of game can be too much for opponents when they get it right – as we saw in the first two games against Kuwait and Oman – but difficult to apply for the full 90 minutes.

But rather than try and temper that to avoid getting hurt on the scoreboard when they “switch off”, Postecoglou is hell-bent on getting his side to the stage where they can see it out for the whole match.

Like Postecoglou, Perrin isn’t afraid to punt on youth, and has brought in a host of youngsters since taking the reins of the Chinese side last year. While not as gung-ho in his approach as the Socceroos boss, the Frenchman also prefers a flexible 4-3-3 system, although often with two “holding midfielders” as opposed to Australia’s one.

Perrin has always been a manager who wants his teams to play attractive football but has made tweaks along the way to suit the requirements of the modern game.

He’s built this Chinese side on a no-nonsense defence, which allows his creative, attacking players to be able to do their thing in the final third. While it’s not always the most eye-catching football from his side, it has been effective since he took charge of China.

He has given the side his tactical acumen to go with the other non-negotiables like team spirit, responsibility and work ethic.

World Cups

Postecoglou took the Socceroos to the tournament in Brazil last year and went up against heavyweights Chile, Netherlands and Spain. While the young and inexperienced Australians performed admirably, they exited the group stage without a point.

The China job is Perrin’s first senior international gig so he has yet to have the opportunity to pit his wits at a World Cup. But he will hope he can continue his progress with China and guide them to Russia in 2018 when qualifying begins later this year.

Who knows, both nations could meet in World Cup qualifying.

The Socceroos will face China PR in the Quarter-Finals of the AFC Asian Cup at Brisbane Stadium on Thursday 22 January (8.30pm local kick off). Click here to purchase tickets.

Source : Football Federation Australia website

Fresher, fitter Socceroos primed for knockout clash

The Socceroos in training for the Asian Camp during their pre-tournament camp in Melbourne.

Remaining in Brisbane and with two days rest and recovery, the Socceroos say they’re in peak shape to press home their advantage in Thursday’s Asian Cup quarter-final against China.

Australia have remained in the Queensland capital after finishing second in Group A following Saturday’s loss 1-0 to Korea Republic.

By contrast, China’s final group game was in Canberra on Sunday when Alain Perrin’s men made it three from three with a 2-1 win over DPR Korea.

The schedule has given the Socceroos an advantage with the team recovering on Sunday and given two days off to switch off, rest and recuperate.

It all means the Socceroos’ high-powered, high-pressing game plan is ready to be rolled out again against their in-form Chinese opponents in Thursday night’s do-or-die clash with China.

“The key is to move the ball quickly. Because it’s one thing defending together and shifting across the pitch but I think it’ll be tough for them to do it for a full 90 minutes – especially in the warm weather,” Socceroo winger Mat Leckie told reporters on Tuesday.

“If we can continually keep the ball moving quickly, at some point they’ll lack that small bit of concentration that will give us opportunity.

“If you’ve got the ball for a long time in the game it’s difficult [for opponents]. Moved left and right for a lot of the game it’s just physically not possible for 90 minutes.”

On Tuesday the Socceroos had a video analysis session on China. This was to be followed by a session back on the track later in the day with another planned for Wednesday.

The German-based striker added: “We’ve had a couple of days off so we’re all ready to get back on the track kicking a ball about a bit.

“We’ll work hard in the first half an hour against China to make them move around.

“If we can get a goal early they’ll probably have to change their game plan and won’t be able to sit so deep.”

The Socceroos will face China PR in the Quarter-Finals of the AFC Asian Cup at Brisbane Stadium on Thursday 22 January (8.30pm local kick off). Click here to purchase tickets.


Source : Football Federation Australia website

Consolidados GRANDE SP 16/1/2015

RESUMO: A novela O Rei do Gado registrou 16,5 pontos na sexta (16), maior audiência da primeira semana de sua reexibição no Vale a Pena Ver de Novo. O primeiro capítulo da trama, que foi ao ar na segunda (12), marcou 14,1 pontos. Em comparação com as quatro semanas anteriores, os cinco primeiros capítulos de O Rei do Gado aumentaram em 16% a audiência da Globo no horário

Por REDAÇÃO, em 19/01/2015 · Atualizado às 12h18

16 JANEIRO 2015


Média do dia (6h/5h59): 11,3


Hora Um: 4,2

Bom Dia São Paulo: 6,0

Bom Dia Brasil: 7,6

Mais Você: 6,8

Bem Estar: 6,5

Encontro: 7,1

SP TV 1a Edição: 9,6

Globo Esporte: 9,0

Jornal Hoje: 8,8

Vídeo Show: 8,6

Sessão da Tarde: 10,0

Cobras & Lagartos: 15,1

O Rei do Gado: 16,5

Malhação: 14,0

Boogie Oogie: 17,0

SP TV 2a Edição: 18,2

Alto Astral: 19,9

Jornal Nacional: 22,0

Império: 29,5

Luz, Câmera 50 anos – Presença de Anita: 19,4

Jornal da Globo: 9,1

Under The Dome: 7,2

Média do dia (6h/5h59): 4,4


Notícias da Manhã: 2,0

Bom Dia e Cia.: 5,0

Um Maluco no Pedaço: 5,6

Chapolin: 5,3

Casos de Família: 5,3

Esmeralda: 6,7

Sortilégio: 6,1

A Feia Mais Bela: 5,0

Chaves: 5,8

SBT Brasil: 5,9

Chiquititas: 9,9

Rebelde: 4,4

Programa do Ratinho: 5,8

Tela de Sucessos: 4,6

The Noite: 3,6

Jornal do SBT: 2,4

Okay Pessoal: 1,5


Média do dia (6h/5h59): 3,9


Balanço Geral Manhã: 1,2

SP no Ar: 2,7

Fala Brasil: 3,8

Hoje em Dia: 3,3

Balanço Geral SP: 6,0

Programa da Tarde: 3,5

Cidade Alerta: 6,7

Jornal da Record: 6,6

Vitória: 4,6

Super Tela: 5,2

Igreja Universal do Reino de Deus: 1,2

Média do dia (6h/5h59): 1,7


Café com Jornal: 0,7

Dia Dia: 0,5

Jogo Aberto: 2,4

Os Donos da Bola: 2,4

Só Risos: 2,2

Sabe ou Não Sabe: 1,6

Brasil Urgente: 4,5

Jornal da Band: 4,0

Show da Fé: 0,8

Glee: 1,3

Os Simpsons: 2,4

A Lenda de Sleepy Hollow: 2,0

Jornal da Noite: 1,0


Média do dia (6h/5h59): 0,6


Tv Kids: 0,2

Você na TV: 1,0

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Leitura Dinâmica: 0,8

Amaury Jr.: 0,7


Notícias Da TV


Super-fit Ivan Franjic can go all the way

Ivan Franjic in action during the Socceroos win over Oman in Sydney.

All-action Socceroo defender Ivan Franjic says if the Aussies went all the way to the Asian Cup final, he’d be okay to last the distance.

Impressively, Franjic, 27, has played every minute of the first three games of the Asian Cup.

In the heat of an Aussie summer, the Russian-based former Brisbane Roar FC star has been a willing runner, powering up and down the right side of defence to attack.

But with right back Chris Herd back in England after succumbing to injury, the Socceroos are relying on Franjic to remain fit enough for the rest of the Cup, with only Mark Milligan and perhaps Trent Sainsbury as potential replacements in his position.

But the Melbourne-born defender assured fans he’s up for the task, thanks to a mini pre-season last month.

“I’ll be fine. Our season [in Russia] finished on December 8 so I went two and a half weeks with a conditioning coach preparing for this [the Asian Cup,” the Torpedo Moscow player told reporters on Tuesday.

“I knew I’d be playing a few games. So I’ll be fine, I’ll be ready and I just can’t wait to go to the final.

“I feel good. My body’s getting stronger and stronger every day and with the games my match fitness is getting better.”

Franjic is set to play on the right this Thursday night in Australia’s do-or-die quarter-final with China at Brisbane Stadium.

And the defender, to his credit, had the guts to say he could’ve done better on Korea Republic’s goal last Saturday.

The 1-0 loss meant the Socceroos lost their chance of top spot in Group A, as a result drawing Group B winners China in the last eight.

“It was obviously disappointing,” Franjic said of the Korea Republic goa.

“It was a throw-in and we switched off for two seconds and we let our mans go.

“I’ll take responsibility for that. Maybe I should’ve organised that better. But it’s happened and we have to move on.”

Meanwhile, with the two days of rest and recovery the Socceroos have blended into Brisbane’s summer vibe seamlessly.

For a former Roar FC fan favourite, Franjic has been spotted by club fans as he’s taken in the nearby sights over the last two days.

But there’s been only one topic of conversation for a player who has hinted at a loan move from his Russian club.

“You get recognised here and there. I’ve had a few Roar fans speak to me, they’re just telling me to come back,” he said with a smile.

The Socceroos will face China PR in the Quarter-Finals of the AFC Asian Cup at Brisbane Stadium on Thursday 22 January (8.30pm local kick off). Click here to purchase tickets.

Source : Football Federation Australia website

Mile Jedinak trains: Socceroos session report

Captain Mile Jedinak leads the Socceroos in training.

The Socceroos were at the cavernous QSAC late Tuesday afternoon for their first session since Sunday where skipper Mile Jedinak moved well.

The entire group, including skipper Jedinak, began the late afternoon session with yoga style stretching for around 10 minutes on the side of the pitch.

Then the main group began their warm ups on the pitch as the keepers – including Liverpool target Mat Ryan – began their with some work on their passing and touch.

Separate from the main group Luongo, Spiranovic, Leckie, Sainsbury, Franjic and Juric stretched with runners on and did very light running drills.

The main group began by splitting into two groups with Ante Milicic barking instructions for a pass and move drill amongst mannequins. Third man runs were the order of the day with skipper Jedinak moving well.

Similar to the work done in the pre-Asian Camp in Melbourne, it emphasised movement and being positive in possession.

Meanwhile, in a nice moment Franjic and Luongo presented a fan in a wheelchair with a signed Socceroos jersey as a number of other players gave the excited fan a signature.

Back on the pitch, a game of seven v seven for the main group arond the centre circle was run by assistant Aureio Vidmar also using Eugene Galekovic and Mitch Langerak (both their passing skills are excellent it must be said).

Intensity was high.

Jedinak at that point was put through a gruelling circuit of sprints and ball work separately with the trainers. He appeared to be over his ankle injury and is certain to return to the starting XI on Thursday night.

The Socceroos got around their special guest in the wheelchair for more pics with Tim Cahill signing for the fan as the session ended after exactly 54 minutes.

The keepers stayed out on the excellent QSAC surface for some work on low shots and crosses.

Likewise Antonis did extras at the end with a series of shuttles and ball work before the main group warmed down.

A handful of Chinese media were there to cover the session.

The Socceroos will face China PR in the Quarter-Finals of the AFC Asian Cup at Brisbane Stadium on Thursday 22 January (8.30pm local kick off). Click here to purchase tickets.

Source : Football Federation Australia website

Preview: Socceroos v China

The Socceroos prior to kick-off against Kuwait.

The Socceroos will need to overcome the tournament’s surprise-packets to stay alive in the AFC Asian Cup in what is set to be a thrilling quarter-final on Thursday night in the Queensland capital.

Despite defeat to Korea Republic in their final group game on Saturday night, Ange Postecoglou’s side will be favourites to make the semis with a win at what will be a sell-out Brisbane Stadium.

The 1-0 defeat to the Koreans meant Australia finished second in their group but their inability to get the result had more to do with an “off-night” in front of goal rather than any performance vulnerability (though “switching off” for the goal has been noted by the Socceroos).

Having created a host of chances against the highly-rated Koreans, Postecoglou and his side shouldn’t have lost any belief they can go all the way in the competition.

But the Green and Gold will need to get back to the ruthless streak they displayed in their first two matches to get past a confident China outfit breaking records at this tournament.

Alain Perrin’s underrated outfit topped a tricky Group B by winning all three matches, the first time they have ever done that at the Asian Cup.

The visitors will also have huge support behind them in the terraces, with thousands of “Team Dragons” fans getting behind the side in all of their group games and Thursday will be no different.

Much could depend on which side adapts to the ordinary surface in Brisbane which has come under-fire throughout the event – though the six-yard boxes have been re-laid.

While the Socceroos’ quick-passing game clearly was affected last weekend, China has found a way to cope on the testing surface.

The Chinese played their first two group matches at the venue, beating Saudi Arabia 1-0 while also coming from behind to knock off Uzbekistan 2-1.

With central defender Matthew Spiranovic suspended after picking up his second yellow card of the tournament against Korea, Alex Wilkinson will slot in alongside ex-Central Coast Mariners team-mate Trent Sainsbury.

Skipper Mile Jedinak is also set to return in midfield after missing the last two matches with an ankle injury.

While the goal-keeper and the rest of the defensive positions pick themselves, it will be intriguing to see what Postecoglou does with the rest of his starting XI.

Have sat attacking triumvirate Tim Cahill, Mathew Leckie and Robbie Kruse on the bench against Korea, it would seem the trio will all start the quarter-final.

Australia’s find of the tournament – Massimo Luongo – should get the nod in one of the two remaining midfield spots with Matt McKay, James Troisi and even Tommy Oar all options for the other.

The big focus for Australia will be just that – focus – for the full 90 minutes and eradicating periods in the match where they “switch off” which cost them against Korea.

China has built their success this tournament on a solid defensive structure while producing quality when it counts going forward.

They’ve rode the wave of positivity from their fans for their wins and they look like they’re actually enjoying themselves.

Alain Perrin has kept fairly consistent with his selections so far this tournament and it’s hard to see him making too many changes to what has worked so well thus far.

Skipper Zheng Zhi is the key man in the Chinese midfield and his ability to control the tempo of the game is vital to his side’s hopes.

Everything China do flows through the Guangzhou Evergrande veteran and it will be up to one of Australia’s attacking midfielders to limit his time on the ball, although the inspirational skipper is battling a back problem and is racing the clock to be fit.

Zhi’s club team-mate Gao Lin hasn’t produced his most destructive form just yet but is a proven goal-scorer, while Sun Ke – fresh from his brace against North Korea – is a genuine match-winner for the visitors.

A sell-out crowd and huge TV audience around Asia and the globe is set to watch what should be a full-blooded quarter-final contest.

While two-time finalists China are in superb form and have won their last two matches against Australia, it’s hard to go past the host nation in this one.

If they can create the same amount of chances as they did on Saturday, with a rested Cahill, Kruse and Leckie back in the line-up, they should get the goals to book their spot in the last four and a semi-final in Newcastle.

The Socceroos will face China PR in the Quarter-Finals of the AFC Asian Cup at Brisbane Stadium on Thursday 22 January (8.30pm local kick off). Click here to purchase tickets.

Source : Football Federation Australia website