JUNE 11 2017 – 4:12PM
There’s nothing like criticism to create a siege mentality within a sporting team, which players draw on for extra resolve.
That’s how Socceroo Trent Sainsbury sees things, and the centre back, who has just spent the past six months on loan at Serie A giant Inter Milan, believes those who have a go at the national team for scraping results against the likes of Saudi Arabia and Iraq only strengthen the players’ resolve.
Trent Sainsbury is tackled by Saudi Arabia’s Mohammed Al Sahlawi during last week’s qualifier Photo: Getty Images
“We made it difficult for ourselves [against Saudi Arabia], but our objective was to win, which we did. It just seems everything we do today is getting hammered, especially in the media, so it’s nice for us to stay together as a group and get three points and we won’t worry about what people say on the outside.
“It fortifies the unit and the belief that we have got, but it would just be nice for the Australian public to be on our side [for] once.”
Coach Ange Postecoglou admitted the Socceroos’ first half against Saudi Arabia in Adelaide last Thursday night was scrappy, but they lifted to win the qualifier 3-2.
“We are working hard to achieve the goals and objectives we have set out for each other, which is to win and qualify for the World Cup our way and in our style. We are never going to progress as a country in football if we keep going as the group that just wants to make it through,” Sainsbury said ahead of Tuesday night’s MCG friendly against Brazil and the squad’s departure for Russia ahead of the Confederations Cup.
“We don’t talk about the criticism, we just focus on ourselves, but it’s hard to ignore when it comes up every single day, the same nitpicking stuff that makes the headlines instead of the three points.
“We have the support of the fans, it would be nice to have the support of the media as well.”
Source : The Canberra Times