The Socceroos Struggle Through To The Next Stage Of World Cup Qualification

Leader Tim Cahill
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11 October, 2017

Prior to the game at the ANZ Stadium in Sydney, signs were placed at the entrance indicating which flags fans were permitted to display at the ground for the Russian Federation 2018 play-off second leg, which Australia won 2-1 to advance 3-2 on aggregate.

Three quick thoughts on Australia 2-1 Syria (Australia through 3-2 on aggregate) in the second leg of the Asian playoff in World Cup qualifying.

Syria, who were hoping to qualify for their first-ever World Cup finals, went ahead in the game in the sixth minute when Omar Al Somah gave the civil war-torn nation an early lead.

Syria coach Ayman al-Hakim was full of praise for his team, which finished with 10 men after Mahmoud Almawas was sent off in the fourth minute of extra time after picking up a second yellow card.

Tim Cahill scored twice, including an extra-time victor, as Australia kept their World Cup hopes alive with a nervy 2-1 victory over Syria on Tuesday.

SYRIA take on Australia today in their World Cup qualifying second leg.

Mooy was heavily involved in Australia's play and was a constant threat from set-pieces but it was ex-Everton and Millwall man Tim Cahill who proved to be his side's two-goal hero at the age of 37. In the end, it took superb crosses from Leckie and Kruse to allow Cahill to find the back of the net through trademark powerful headers from close range.

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"In the last half-hour the two best chances Syria created were the penalty and they hit the post after the ball was probably a metre over the line", he said.

Sensing their opportunity to exploit a tiring Syria (due to their internal conflict, Syria's "home" fixture had taken place in Malaysia - it showed here), up stepped Australia's top-goalscorer one again.

"I'm not sure the charter flight is an option for this one, but you can certainly can see out there it helped us in terms of our recovery processes".

With the CONCACAF qualifiers coming to their conclusion tonight, Australia and Tim Cahill will not have to wait long before learning their fate.

An injury to Brad Smith soon after saw Mooy brought on just a few minutes later, allaying whatever fuss was caused by Ange Postecoglou's selection.

As some of the teams' biggest fans made their way to the match, they spoke to SBS about how they were feeling about the game.


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