Socceroos set a world winning streak record but then lose their next match in AFC World Cup Qualifiers
On the 8th October the Socceroos played another world cup qualifier home game In Doha. This time against Oman. While the score of 3-1 looks convincing it was far from it. Often Australia failed to keep possession and the turning point of game came in the 35th minute with the score at 1-1 Oman’s playmaker Arshad Al-Alawi left the field with a shoulder injury. In the second half Australia played a lot better and the inform Martin Boyle and substitute Mitchell Duke scored poachers goals. The other key to the win was the form of Soccoeroo Captain Matt Ryan, despite not getting much of a game in the La Liga. The win was the Socceroos 11th World Cup qualifying game win in a row which is a feat never achieved before by any other country. Of course that record will only be something to fondly reflect on if the Socceroos qualify for Qatar 2022.
The Socceroos then travelled to Japan to play their long time rival the Blue Samurai. They were trying to extend their winning streak to 12 and finally break their hoodoo of never having beaten the Blue Samurai on home soil. This was their big chance with Japan having lost two of last three games. It was not to be Japan dominated most of the game and should scored more than one goal up when Adjin Hrustic stepped up in the 70th minute to take a free kick just outside box and put the ball perfectly in the corner of the goal. It did look as though the Socceroos were going to come away a draw when in 85th minute a defected shot ended being a own goal to Aziz Behich. The winning streak is over and now the Socceroos are clearly competing with Saudi Arabia and Japan for those two direct qualification spots.
Matildas play two not so friendly internationals against Brazil.
On the 23rd October one of most entertaining and skilled matches most spectators had seen from the Matildas was played against Brazil. No such thing as a friendly when these two teams meet. The game saw Alanna Kennedy handed the captains armband in her 100th game. With the return of Ellie Carpenter and Steph Catley now fully recovered the two wing backs terrorised the Brazilian defence. Lydia Wiliams took the gloves and made a solid claim to return as the No. 1 Goalkeeper. There was also debuts for Remy Seimsen and Bryleeh Henry. Goals to Polkinghorne, Van Egmond and the inform Fowler saw Australia defeat Brazil 3-1.
Three days later the Matildas again looked like they would continue with another goal 1st half goal for Polkinghorne and in the 53rd minute following a very nice build up with Wheeler, Simon and Kerr resulting in Sam’s 49th goal for the Matildas. Deservedly the Brazilians were not done and hit back twice in 7 minutes. Both teams were going for the win but the game ended in a two all draw.
The next day due to Covid the international Matildas were back on the plane without able to get close to family, friends and fans. Lets hope that soon changes for everyone.
Matt Ryans’ move from the Premier League to La Liga will certainly reduce the number of items to collect. On a positive note Panini has issued both a Matt Ryan card and sticker for the 21-22 La Liga season and Topps have also issued a Real Sociedad 30 sticker collection including Matt Ryan.
Now regular squad Socceroo James Jeggo’s, Greek Club have issued autographed player cards that are available on line for purchase of 1 Euro but 15 Euros shipping!