The Socceroos journey to the 2018 FIFA World Cup will take them to Jordan, Tajikstan, Kyrgyzstan and Bangladesh after they were drawn in Group B for the Asian Football Confederation’s (AFC) second round of qualifying in Kuala Lumpur tonight.
Australia faces new footballing frontiers as it has never played Tajikstan, Kyrgyzstan or Bangladesh in a full international and only met Jordan twice, registering a win and loss in the two matches.
Socceroos head coach Ange Postecoglou attended the draw in Kuala Lumpur and has declared the players and staff will embrace the challenges in front of them.
“The draw is certainly an interesting one and throws up some games against unfamiliar countries but the first phase of qualifying is about us and making sure we maintain our high standards on and off the field,” Postecoglou said.
“Over the past 18 months we have taken great pride in being the best we can be on and off the field and we will face some logistical and footballing challenges but we’ll continue to work hard to make sure we are ready for whatever challenges we face.
“We now have to prepare for Kyrgyzstan, Bangladesh, Tajikstan and Jordan and continue our journey.
“We have another eight international matches to continue to give the core of the squad more experience while offering some opportunities to younger players to ensure we build depth.”
The winner of the eight groups and the four best runners up progress to the next stage of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifying process and also ensure entry into the 2019 AFC Asian Cup.
All of the Socceroos matches in Asian Football Confederation’s (AFC) second round of qualifying will be broadcast LIVE on Fox Sports and on a one-hour delay on SBS.
The Socceroos matches in the Asian Football Confederation’s (AFC) second round of qualifying are:
11 June 2015 BYE
16 June 2015 Kyrgyzstan v Socceroos (away– venue and time tbc)
3 September 2015 Socceroos v Bangladesh at nib Stadium, Perth. 7pm (AWT) kick off
8 September 2015 Tajikstan v Socceroos (away– venue and time tbc)
8 October 2015 Jordan v Socceroos (away– venue and time tbc)
13 October 2015 BYE
12 November 2015 Socceroos v Kyrgyzstan (home– venue and time tbc)
17 November 2015 Bangladesh v Socceroos (away– venue and time tbc)
24 March 2016 Socceroos v Tajikstan (home– venue and time tbc)
29 March 2016 Socceroos v Jordan (home– venue and time tbc)
* Please note venues and kick off times are to be confirmed, except where noted above
Group A: UAE, Saudi Arabia, Palestine, Timor Leste, Malaysia
Group B: Australia, Jordan, Tajikstan, Kyrgyzstan, Bangladesh
Group C: China, Qatar, Maldives, Bhutan, Hong Kong
Group D: Iran, Oman, India, Turkmenistan, Guam
Group E: Japan, Syria, Afghanistan, Singapore, Cambodia
Group F: Iraq, Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia, Chinese Taipei
Group G: Korea Republic, Kuwait, Lebanon, Myanmar, Laos
Group H: Uzbekistan, Bahrain, Philippines, Yemen, DPR Korea1 comment