Australia To Set Sail With Win

The Socceroos will be eager to jet off to Brazil with a win under their belt.

Ange Postecoglou will expect nothing less than a win when the Socceroos  host South Africa  on Monday night.

The Socceroos have been heavily backed during the week and little wonder. Reports coming from the visiting nation suggest Bafana Bafana will be bringing a second-string squad due to the unavailability of players. With the international friendly falling outside of the FIFA calendar dates, club sides are not obliged to release their star players, meaning up to 11 out of the 18 South Africans initially named in the squad will miss the trip. Their biggest absentee is no doubt captain and goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune, whose club side Kaizer Chiefs, were reluctant to let the custodian go.

The Socceroos are also likely to be without big names of their own, however due to very different circumstances. Newly crowned captain Mile Jedinak is likely to miss the hit out with a niggling groin injury, though coach Ange Postecoglou had planned to rest him regardless following the extensive workload he's endured for English club Crystal Palace. No doubt this is a trial match for Postecoglou to experiment, and Socceroos fans could see a host of players make their senior debuts for the Green and Gold. Among the pick include Brisbane youngster Ben Halloran and the relatively unknown Bailey Wright. With seven players still to be cut from the provisional squad, all players will be out to impress for Postecoglou.

If the Aussies fail to win against South Africa on Monday night, it will raise some serious concerns less than three weeks out from the World Cup. The players have a lot to play for, and although it is labelled an international friendly, expect anything but. With the current disorganised state of the South Africans, a Socceroos' victory looks on the cards and Postecoglou will demand a committed performance from his players and that’s exactly what he should get.

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