Socceroos: Be bold or bust against Peru

Socceroos: Be bold or bust against Peru

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Arzani earned a move to Europe thanks to a breakout 2018 World Cup with the Socceroos

The equation for the Socceroos is rather simple heading into World Cup matchday three: win or pack up and make the long journey home.

Australia simply must beat Peru at Sochi’s Fisht Olympic Stadium, in desperate need of three points in an attempt to match Denmark’s tally.

Even then, victory against the South Americans still may not be enough to set up a Round of 16 meeting with Group D’s victor in Nizhny Novgorod.

The green and gold will be hoping France can do them a favour elsewhere and down the Danes in Moscow, coupled with a superior goal difference.

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Denmark currently sit on +1 after a win against Peru and draw against Australia, while the Socceroos are on -1.

By captain Mile Jedinak’s admission, the position Bert van Marwijk’s side finds itself in is less than ideal.

“We’re not kidding ourselves, we are relying on someone else to get a result for us, but we’ve got to go and do the business ourselves,” the skipper told a media conference.

“We haven’t really touched on it too much … it has to be about putting in a performance and getting a result we want, three points.

“Your sole focus is on you and your teammates and focusing on what you can do on that field.”

The Socceroos gave as good as they got against both France and Denmark, but in each instance were unable to come away with a result.

Les Blues ground out a 2-1 win in Kazan, while Denmark clung onto a 1-1 draw despite an onslaught.

Particularly in Samara, chances were not an issue. The Socceroos chalked up some 15 efforts on goal but were unable to beat Kasper Schmeichel beyond Jedinak’s second penalty of the tournament.

Youngster Daniel Arzani was introduced to great effect, never hesitating to back in his natural ability and run and dribble at the Danish defenders.

The 19-year-old called on his defenders to follow his lead and be bold against Peru.

“We just have to be more brave and I think that’s the way everyone’s looking at it,” he said.

“We just have to take more risks going forward because at the end of the day, it’s a must-win for us.”

Van Marwijk, who has seldom tinkered with his starting XI, is expected to be forced into at least one change.

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Makeshift striker Andrew Nabbout, who started against France and Denmark, is expected to miss the game after dislocating his shoulder.

Despite saying the pain of the injury has subsided, Nabbout has been spotted with his arm still in a sling.

That opens the door for Tomi Juric’s inclusion, a different type of striker who will give the Peruvian defence a bigger, more sizeable headache.

The FC Luzern man was brought off the bench on matchdays one and two.

Having overcome injury himself prior to the World Cup, the 190-centimetre hitman said he is ready to make the decisive impact up front.

“I feel good, I’ve been training well. I’m quite confident in my abilities and that I’m fit enough to play,” Juric explained.

“But as of yet, we don’t know who will be starting or anything.

“But whoever is starting, it’s just important that we put in a good shift and we get a good, positive result.”

Australia vs Peru and Denmark vs France kick off simultaneously at midnight AEST.

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