Australia kicks off the second round of AFC Asian Cup group matches against Oman in Sydney on Tuesday. To watch Australia take on Oman, go to the end of this article.
Australia began their Asian Cup campaign with a comprehensive 4-1 victory over Kuwait and will look to build on it against Oman. The result, though, will work as a confidence booster for the Socceroos after their average results in the pre tournament friendlies. While their opponent, Oman, suffered a narrow 1-0 loss to South Korea in their opening match, they could well have come into the match with a valuable point had they not missed a guilt-edge chance to equalize in the stoppage time.
Australian coach Ange Postecoglou said that he expects a similar style of play from Oman that made it tough for South Korea. Oman under Paul Le Guen’s management has developed a strong counter attacking style of play with good defensive organisation. Paul Le Guen favours a more fluid 4-4-2 formation compared to now popular 4-2-3-1 formation due to the versatile players under his command.
Postecoglou also reminded of their head to head by saying that they are always a tough opponent for them.
Though injury to skipper Mile Jedinak will force Postecoglou in making changes in the lineup against Oman, Postecoglou is cautious about fatigue and cited Australia’s 2014 FIFA World Cup campaign as example of depending on a core group of players. It is expected that a few of the players will be rested keeping in mind the latter stages as well as their match against South Korea on Saturday. Australia’s leading goal scorer, Tim Cahill, will lead the team in Jedinak’s absence.
Mark Milligan will be most likely to replace the Crystal Palace midfielder but Postecoglou could also consider Mark Bresciano or youngster Terry Antonis for the holding role.While no changes are expected in the back four but Postecoglou will demand an improvement while defending set-pieces after conceding a goal against Kuwait from set pieces. Oman posses set-piece specialist like Amad Al Hosni and Qasim Said so the Australian back four will need to be careful to not give away any silly dead ball situations.
Australia versus Oman will be held on Tuesday 13th January from 02:30 PM Indian standard time. The match will have no telecast in India but One World Sports will show the game in US. Fox Sports 4 will show the game in Australia and Eurosport to telecast it in France.
A free live stream link for the Australia vs Oman game can be accessed from the link given below.