Stepping up for your nation’s captain is never an easy assignment, but the quietly-spoken Aaron Mooy handled it with aplomb in Australia’s 5-0 win over Bangladesh.
Mooy put in a near-on man-of-the-match display in midfield, capped with a second-half thunderbolt, in Mile Jedinak’s injury-enforced absence as the Socceroos triumphed in Perth on Thursday night.
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The 24-year-old Melbourne City man played in central midfield alongside Mark Milligan and was busy throughout the evening, linking up play with clever passing.
Mooy was reluctant to get carried away given the opposition, but stepping into captain Mile Jedinak’s void is no easy feat.
“I just try my best when I get my chance, that’s all I can do,” Mooy told FourFourTwo.
“I don’t worry about anyone else, I just do my best.”
Mooy, who has eight Socceroos caps, wasn’t in the 2015 Asian Cup squad but featured in the Germany and Macedonia friendlies earlier this year.
He admitted he was still finding his feet in the national team set-up, but performances like Thursday’s will build his belief.
“I’ll take some confidence out of it,” Mooy said. “I was happy to be on the pitch. Every minute is very valuable.
“I’m playing for the national team, so it’s pretty good. Hopefully I can push on and keep improving.”
Mooy added that he felt the Socceroos did well to break down an opposition side intent on defence.
“I thought it was pretty positive,” he said. “They sat behind the ball a lot and made it really difficult to break them down.
“We moved the ball around well and created some goals and took our chances.”