Skip to main content

England can't afford Australia loss - Kewell

Australia great Harry Kewell believes the Socceroos can put unneeded pressure on England with an upset win in the pre-Euro 2016 friendly.

The Asian champions take on Roy Hodgson's team at the Stadium of Light on May 27, in the first meeting between the nations since 2003.

Kewell was on the scoresheet when sides last met, outmuscling Rio Ferdinand in the Socceroos' shock 3-1 win at Upton Park.

The 37-year-old told Omnisport that Hodgson's men would be under the pump if they failed to beat Australia just over a fortnight out from the European Championship in France.

"We're playing a game that's got pressure. At the end of the day, deal with it. Australia will deal with it, England will deal with it," said Kewell, who will be speaking at a Football Federation Victoria lunch as well as conducting 10 masterclasses around Melbourne in early May.

"But yes, if they lose, then it will put pressure on them.

"I'm sure they're not going to take it lightly and technically in the back of their mind they're going to remember what happened last time."

England showed decent form in March's friendlies, stunning world champions Germany 3-2 before a loss to Netherlands.

However, Kewell – who scored 17 goals in 56 appearances for Australia – said Ange Postecoglou's men should be fearless.

"It's going to be tough. Let's not say any different. I think England are looking very good at the moment, very strong," he said.

"I saw them play against Germany, they were phenomenal. They didn't back it up against the Dutch in the next game, but they didn't have their full squad out.

"I think it's going to be a great test for us.

"We should keep our heads held high because we are Asian champions and we need to go out there and play the way that we know we can play.

"If we can play that, then we will be confident enough to maybe make an upset."

For more information on the clinics, visit; and you can find more info on the lunch at