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2014 World Cup Aftermath: When Australia Went Down Under

2014 World Cup Aftermath: When Australia Went Down Under

Australia is one of the squads that had an early exit in the competition. It left the Group Stage after a beating from Spain and took the 30th spot.

 

Recap

The Socceroos were already labeled as the group’s minnow prior to the actual competition. Grouped with Spain and Netherlands—the defending champion and runner-up of  the 2010 World Cup, Australia’s dream of advancing into the latter stages of the competition looked like a mere illusion.  They were the least favorite of world cup betting tips. The squad saw a little dose of hope with the match pitted against Chile, but to no avail.

 

Chile let them had their first taste of defeat in the tournament. Scoring a goal was not enough to counter Chile’s three (3) goals. The loss sort of motivated them in their second match.

 

Against Netherlands, Mile Jedinak’s penalty gave them a 2-1 lead. Unfortunately, just after four (4) minutes, Robin van Persie and Memphis Depay shifted the momentum back to their side.

 

After losing a crucial match, Australia was technically out of the competition. But they had the opportunity to re-group and avoid a humiliating exit when they face Spain. Like them, Spain was already out of the tournament. Yet, the Spaniards opted for a graceful exit, while they had to endure a severe thrashing.

 

Where it went wrong

Australia’s consistency lasted only during the qualifiers. The squad could hardly catch-up with its clinical opponents. Apparently, the Socceroos have yet to build a group that can compete on a world-class level. Sporting a performance commonly seen from the typical football leagues will hardly do any good. Instead, it is the reverse that happened.

 

According to experts, Australia’s inability to maintain and develop a powerhouse squad can be traced to the shortcomings of honing players in the “junior rank.” This is in stark contrast to their opponents, who have already devoted their childhood in preparing for this competition.

 

Onward to 2018

Ange Postecoglou earned plaudits for sporting a relatively young squad. However, the exit forces the team’s head honcho to reflect.

 

When asked about their World Cup ordeal, Postecoglou stressed that time became their biggest enemy. The preparations and the proper player conditioning proved to be too overwhelming.

 

Nevertheless, Australia now have another four (4) years to prepare—and hopefully, all their efforts will deliver the expected results.

 

Image Source: New York Daily News

 

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