Australian Socceroos to fight hard against Germany for victory

18:32, June 12, 2010      

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Australia's National Football ( Soccer) Team, or Socceroos, conceded that three-time World Cup champion Germany is favorite for the coming game, but that does not mean they will wave the white flag, Australia's media reported on Saturday.

Australia will open its FIFA World Cup campaign in its Group D clash against Germany on Sunday at the Durban Stadium in Durban, South Africa.

The Australians have never beaten Germany in two meetings, losing 3-4 at the 2005 Confederations Cup and 0-3 to the former West Germany at the 1974 World Cup, with both games in Germany.

Australian team to win Germany on Sunday's match has been placed into doubt while the press believes "Germans are far superior, and the Socceroos will attempt to intimidate the Europeans especially without the experienced (German captain Michael) Ballack," the Daily Telegraph wrote.

Lately, Socceroos have faced accusations of negativity from Germany coach Joachim Loew, who has branded Australia soccer boring, declared "Australia can be expected to offer anything but a great spectacle."

Australia has been putting the second oldest of the 32 squads at the World Cup against a German outfit traveling with its youngest group in 76 years.

Germany is second youngest in World Cup history, with an average age of under 25.

The German squad's average age hands Australia a daunting task in a fast-paced modern game which puts a premium on speed and athleticism.

But Australia's ageing veterans of the 2006 World Cup in Germany have no doubts they are up to the task, The Daily Telegraph said.

"A lot has been said in the press about age, but we don't worry much about it," Australian Left-back Scott Chipperfield, at 34 the second oldest of the outfield players said.

"People say we are slower, if we qualify well and good, but if we don't, they'll be saying we're too old and slow."

With 20 goals from 40 international appearances, midfielder Tim Cahill has been widely regarded as Australia's biggest threat going forward, and he remained fearless to the German manager's outburst.

"Let them throw stones, we'll just cop it on the chin," Cahill said.

"There is a lot of talk about the Germans talking us down and how well they are going to do and for us that is a positive. We are going into the game as underdogs and hopefully try to make our imprint on the game as soon as possible."

There were also concerns over injury on Tim Cahill, Brett Emerton, star attacker Harry Kewell and goalkeeper Adam Federici, but coach Pim Verbeek said there was nothing to worry about.

"All the players are ready," Verbeek told Australian Associated Press on Tuesday.

"All the players will be fit. Brett Holman, Brett Emerton and Adam Federici will tomorrow be 100 percent ready on the field."

According to the Australian Online, Kewell has barely kicked a ball in anger in 2010 after suffering an ongoing groin injury and he will not be expected to get through 90 minutes against Germany, while stamina-machine Emerton had declared himself fit to play the whole match if selected despite also lacking game time recently.

Meanwhile, Verbeek has brushed aside suggestions that the 3-1 friendly defeat to the United States on Saturday would have a detrimental effect on their World Cup chances.

"I'm not concerned. They didn't create that many chances in the first half and it was only when we were pushing forward that chances seemed to fall to them," Verbeek said.

"That sort of thing is all about organization and we still have time to work on that. We will find out next week whether my players are ready. I'm not worried about a game like this."

Australian Socceroos reserve goalkeeper Brad Jones on Saturday has officially withdrawn from the World Cup due to illness of family member, with Eugene Galekovic drafted into the 23-man squad.

German player Michael Ballack has also ruled out of the World Cup due to an ankle injury.

Source: Xinhua


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