Ryan: Socceroos learn lessons from UAE stalemate

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Goalkeeper Mat Ryan says the Socceroos should have beaten the United Arab Emirates and are anticipating a tougher test against Qatar.

Australia had a 0-0 draw with the UAE in Abu Dhabi on Friday and take on Qatar in Doha in the early hours of Wednesday morning (AEDT).

The Socceroos secured their first clean sheet this year but struggled to create clear-cut chances.

With match was played in oppressive 35 degree heat, Ryan told FourFourTwo the Aussie team will learn a lot from the experience.

“The conditions made things a little tricky,” the 22-year-old said.

“We all felt though that we should have got the win.

“It was educational in the fact that we know that these types of teams are going to frustrate us by slowing the game down with plenty of stoppages, going down injured, etcetera. So we have to be more efficient and direct when the ball is in play.”

The friendly against Qatar will be one of the Socceroos’ last hit-outs before the Asian Cup starts in January.

According to Ryan, head coach Ange Postecoglou said it was an “okay game” against the UAE.

“He is never pleased nor is the playing group, we all know we are a work in progress and are determined to keep improving,” Ryan said.

Qatar are ranked 96th in the world, 12 places below Australia and 23 places below the UAE.

“In what we have seen there are similarities between Qatar and the UAE,” Ryan said.

“They have some technically good players, especially in offence, and a fair few of their players have African or South American heritage and aren't in fact from Qatar, just been scouted by the country. It will be a tough game.”

Ryan said the Socceroos won’t be changing their approach against the Qataris.

“We will be having the same game plan,” he said.

“In possession we hope it will be the ball doing the work and in defence our structures will hopefully enable us to win the ball back quickly.”

Bernie Ibini made his debut for Australia in the scoreless draw with the UAE.

Ryan was happy to see the Sydney FC attacker, a good friend who he played with at Blacktown City and the Central Coast Mariners, earn his first cap.

“It's crazy enough when you're living your dream and playing for your country and just mind-blowing when you get to share that with your best mate who is doing the exact same thing,” he said.

“We both get great satisfaction for ourselves and one another for the journeys we have been on and the experiences we have shared so far and look forward to what lies ahead.”