JUNE 18 2017 – 8:36PM
Midfield superiority. Attacking from wide. Pace across the park. Socceroos boss Ange Postecoglou has outlined how Australia are preparing to shock the football world and beat Germany in their Confederations Cup opener.
Pulling off the unlikely feat will require a 90-minute performance that the Socceroos are yet to put together under Postecoglou’s adventurous 3-2-4-1 system.
No one from the Australian setup is underestimating their opponent. Germany aren’t world champions for nothing and have brought a squad of talented and hungry young stars to Russia – in the place of most of their World Cup winners.
But as the Monday night (Tuesday morning AEST) clash with the world champions draws nearer, no cracks in the confidence are appearing from the Socceroos camp.
“We need to be at our very best. There’s no shying away from that. We’re not going to make any sort of impact unless we’re absolutely at the peak of our powers in everything we do,” Postecoglou said.
“That’s not out of our reach at this point. We’ve got midfield depth … some real attacking weapons out wide and the ability to really out-run and out-pace teams.
“I’ve been really happy [with the new system]. The kind of things I want to bring out in our game, it has. It hasn’t for 90 minutes yet but I think we’re not too far away.”
Robbie Kruse has overcome a knee knock suffered in the friendly loss to Brazil, ensuring every Socceroo is fit and available for selection against Germany.
Rapid-fire matches with Cameroon and Chile follow for Australia, with the top two sides from the four-team group progressing to the semi-finals.
It’s a cut-throat system that makes the opening match ‘crucial’ to Postecoglou and his side.
“You want to get a result and you want to get a strong performance,” he said. “And a strong performance against a team like Germany gives you confidence.”
Australia has shown decent form against Joachim Loew’s side in recent clashes.
In 2011, the Socceroos shocked a below-strength side with a 2-1 win in Monchengladbach.
After their Asian Cup win in 2015, Postecoglou took his champions to Germany for a friendly which Australia drew 2-2.
Seven of his current squad were in the side that day, including goalscorer James Troisi, and Postecoglou said he expected the memory of that day to be front of mind.
“We competed well that night, absolutely,” he said. “The players I’m sure did get a bit of heart out of that … and the way the team’s evolving we feel positive playing against anyone.”
Source : The Canberra Times