2018 World Cup Preview – Australia

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A tumultuous 12 months for the Socceroos culminates in their fourth successive World Cup appearance.

While expectations have been hampered compared to previous years, the Socceroos themselves fancy their chances to shock the world.

Australia World Cup Betting Markets

Stage of Elimination

  • Group Stage @ $1.17
  • Round of 16 @ $5.50
  • Quarter Final @ $19.00
  • Semi Final @ $67.00
  • Runners Up @ $151.00
  • Winners @ $251.00

Draw

Group:

Australia have been drawn in Group C with France, Denmark and Peru

Opponents:

Record vs France– W: 1, D: 1, L: 2

Last Meeting – 11 October 2013: Australia lost to France 0-6

Record vs Denmark – W: 1, D: 0, L: 2

Last Meeting – 2 June 2012: Australia lost to Denmark 0-2

Record vs Peru – Never Played

Schedule:

Saturday 16th June – 8:00pm – Australia vs France

Thursday 21st June – 10:00pm – Australia vs Denmark

Wednesday 27th June – 12:00am – Australia vs Peru

Group Ranking:

With their recent coaching change, Australia comes into this World Cup with plenty of question marks and is viewed as the weakest team in Group C.

They will be glad their draw is not as tough as it was as 2014 however it is still going to be difficult for them to get through to the knockout phase with three tough assignments.

They have been installed as underdogs in each of their matches and cannot really complain about that distinction.

On their day they can certainly be competitive with anyone however their margin for error is minute.

Back Australia To Win Group C @ $19.00

World Cup History

Number of Appearances

4 – 1974, 2006, 2010, 2014

Best Performance

Round of 16 – 2006

Match Record & Goal Tally

Played: 13, Won: 2, Drawn: 3, Lost: 9

Scored: 11, Conceded: 26

2018 Qualifying Campaign

Made the World Cup by…

Australia finished third in AFC Qualification Group B and won the AFC and AFC/CONCACAF Playoffs to qualify for Russia

Qualifying Record & Goals Tally

Played: 22, Won: 14, Drawn: 8, Lost: 2

Scored: 51, Conceded: 18

Back Australia to be the Top Asian Team @ $4.33

Story to Watch

Much like throughout their qualifying campaign, the question surrounding this Socceroos side is which team is going to show up?

The one that was forced to settle for a playoff entry to the World Cup after struggling to score goals or the one that won the Asian Cup?

They have players which on their day certainly belong on the world stage, but can they perform when all eyes are on them?

That is what we are going to have to wait and see.

Australia 2018 World Cup Squad

GOALKEEPERS

Brad Jones, Mat Ryan, Danny Vukovic

DEFENDERS

Aziz Behich, Milos Degenek, Matthew Jurman, James Meredith, Josh Risdon, Trent Sainsbury

MIDFIELDERS

Jackson Irvine, Mile Jedinak, Robbie Kruse, Massimo Luongo, Mark Milligan, Aaron Mooy, Tom Rogic, Daniel Arzarni, Dimitri Petratos

FORWARDS

Tim Cahill, Tomi Juric, Matthew Leckie, Andrew Nabbout, Jamie Maclaren

Strengths

Australia’s midfield is littered with talent plying their trade in some of Europe’s toughest competitions.

While many questioned his influence as he missed games during qualification, Mile Jedinak reminded everyone of what he was capable of with his efforts in the Honduras playoffs.

When linking up with the likes of Aaron Mooy, Massimo Luongo, Jackson Irvine and Tom Rogic, it has the potential to be a very good combination between the two and give coach Bert van Marwijk a headache working out how best to deploy his strongest assets.

Weakness

Despite scoring 51 goals during qualification, there are legitimate questions about who will score for the Socceroos.

Tomi Juric was expected to lead the line but has struggled at international level, as has Jamie Maclaren in his limited time with the national team.

Many are still hoping Tim Cahill can produce some magic but that is based more on his resume rather than recent form, which has included a lot of time on the bench.

Notable Absentees

Jamie Maclaren was the focus of this list before his last minute call up to the training camp and could find himself in the squad despite his initial omission.

Also already missing from the side is qualifying mainstay Bailey Wright alongside Alex Gersbach, who was considered a contender for the starting left back slot.

Perhaps the biggest surprise in the final cut is James Troisi losing his battle for a midfield spot while import Fran Karacic was left out as well.

Key Player

Aaron Mooy

The only English Premier League player in the squad, Mooy is coming off a season that earned him plenty of praise as his Huddersfield side staved off the drop.

He has not quite reached those levels playing for the Socceroos, still trying to find his exact role in the side.

Mooy is critical to keeping the midfield ticking over, whether he plays as the featured playmaker or in a deeper defensive role.

Final Prediction

While many Socceroos fans would love to get on board with the romanticised idea that this side could make a run.

The truth is they are just a step behind the rest of this group and will struggle to get the bare minimum four points needed to have a shot at playing in the knockout phase.

A third match win over Peru is certainly a possibility and if you think the Socceroos can end the group stage on a high note, the win market is one worth getting on.

PREDICTION: GROUP STAGE

Best Bet: Australia to Win a Game @ $2.10