July 09, 2007

Horse 778 - An Asian Adventure

Australia 1 - Oman 1

The problem with entering a new confederation is that Australia has had absolutely no records before tonight. Considering that they only lost 1-0 to Italy in the 2006 World Cup, Australia entered the 2007 AFC Nations Cup as favourites; although perhaps this was a little premature.

The side hasn't really played much in a system where you're likely to have a consistent fixture list. In the OFC it would amount to a few matches every four years against a heap of island nations no bigger than Blacktown City Council. Suddenly we're up against actual countries that play together and apart from the odd player in Europe, they're coherent enough as a squad to play well together.

Against Oman tonight Australia played without passion or heart, and were nearly facing looking really stupid after a goal down in the first half. Only after Cahill's rather opportune shot late in the game did Australia actually look like they were trying when it finally dawned on them that they might lose.

Warning to Australia: Asia isn't a joke. They play as hard as Europe and are capable of ripping apart an Australian side given half a chance... tonight Oman were given that half chance.

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