Australia will be severely tested when they face powerhouses Germany, Argentina and Mexico in Group C of the U17 World Cup in Chile in just over two months' time.
The official draw was held this morning (AEST) in the Centro de las Artes 660 art gallery in Santiago, the host nation’s capital city.
Germany, Argentina, Mexico- The Joeys got the worst group in Australia's World Cup History! #U17WC
— Con Stamocostas (@constama10) August 6, 2015
Speaking after the draw Joeys head coach Tony Vidmar was under no illusions about the challenge that Australia will now face.
“We’re coming up against three powerhouse countries in world football but that is what you expect at the World Cup,” Vidmar said.
“Australia is not going to get any better exposure, or a better chance to test ourselves against the best in the game, than this.
“Our preparation for these games steps up from now and we will work hard to ensure we represent Australia with pride.”
The tournament will run from October 17 to November 8, with 24 national teams playing across seven venues in the South American country.
The U17 World Cup is often seen as a window to the future superstars of the game.
— David Lewis (@DavidLewis31) August 6, 2015
Australia begins its FIFA U-17 World Cup Chile campaign against Germany on October 18, before taking on Mexico, and finishing with Argentina.
All of the Joeys’ group stage matches will be at the Estadio Municipal Nelson Oyarzún Arenas, Chillán, 400km south of Santiago.
Vidmar said playing all group stage matches in one city would be a positive for the Joeys.
“There’s a few groups where they have to move around the country, so it’s handy to have all our games in the same city,” Vidmar said.
Meanwhile, the Australian Joeys have stormed into the semi-finals of the AFF Youth Championships in Cambodia, notching up 24 goals in four straight wins.
GROUP A: Chile, Croatia, Nigeria, USA
GROUP B: England, Guinea, Brazil, Korea Republic
GROUP C: Australia, Germany, Mexico, Argentina
GROUP D:Belgium, Mali, Hondura, Ecuador
GROUP E: South Africa, Costa Rica, Korea DPR, Russia
GROUP F: New Zealand, France, Syria, Paraguay