Madrid.- Australia will play for the sixth time in its history, the fifth of them in a row, the Football World Cup. And it will do so with the idea of going beyond the group stage in which it has fallen in all of its participations except Germany 2006, when it reached the round of 16.
That appointment was the second and last they played, qualifying as members of the Oceania Soccer Confederation, from which they requested separation in 2005 so that they could be part of the Asian One.
The decision, based on a desire to face more competitive rivals and not risk their classification in the same match against an opponent from another confederation, seemed risky to some, but the results proved them right. start doing
Since then, the Australian team has been present in four of the four possible editions, although this last has perhaps been the most demanding classification of all. The Australians, who were already risking all or nothing against Honduras at Russia 2018, started well in the second qualifying round by adding complete wins against Kuwait, Jordan, Nepal and Chinese Taipei.
However, in the next stage they had to settle for third place behind Japan and Saudi Arabia. This forced them to seek their ticket for Qatar against the dreaded Peru. The match ended 0–0 and required a penalty shootout, where goalkeeper Andrew Redmayne became a national idol and a ‘trending topic’ for his unique method of harassing pitchers.
It will compete for the position under Stix with Matt Ryan, the Copenhagen goalkeeper and probably one of the team’s most media players alongside Aaron Mooy (Celtic) and Hrstik (Eintracht Frankfurt). The rest are mostly distributed by clubs around the world, without any clear reference as to Tim Cahill until not too long ago.
The former Everton player and other teams missed the appointment between 2006 and 2018. And such was his importance that, having missed three goals scored by Jedinak from penalties in that interval, he converted five of the remaining ten. In addition, he gave a helping hand and was at times a spiritual leader. In the end, he ended his boot with a legacy that made him the second most capped footballer and top scorer.
Without his figure, Graham Arnold will seek to form a compact group that tries to accept less and resist a group that appears open that also includes France, Denmark and Tunisia.