Australia will take on some of the world’s best after the Socceroos were drawn alongside Chile, Netherlands and Spain in Group B at the 2014 FIFA World Cup Draw.
Australia will take on some of the world-s best football nations after the Socceroos were drawn alongside Chile, Netherlands and Spain in Group B at the 2014 FIFA World Cup Draw in Costa do Sauipe, Brazil today.
Australia-s 4th appearance at the FIFA World Cup Finals begins against Chile on June 13 before they take on the Netherlands on 18 June and Spain on 23 June.
The group contains the defending World Cup Champions Spain (ranked No. 1), 2010 World Cup runners up the Netherlands (No. 9) and South American powerhouse Chile (No 15). It is a tough group but Socceroos Coach Ange Postecoglou spoke glowingly about the challenge ahead.
“This is the World Cup. It-s the best football nations on the planet and we will embrace the challenge that lies ahead of us,” Postecoglou said.
“There-s no doubt we have a tough group. We will see some great football played in our group and it-s up to us to play a part in that.
“We wanted to play some big nations. We want to test ourselves against the best nations on the biggest stage in world sport. Australia-s sporting history is full of stories where we have embraced the underdog status and we will come to the World Cup looking to create some magic moments that all Australians will remember for years to come.
“We can now start planning full steam ahead for the World Cup to make sure that we arrive in Brazil knowing we have given ourselves every opportunity to represent the Australian public with pride on the world stage.”
Football Federation Australia Chief Executive Officer David Gallop was also certain the Socceroos could unite Australia next June in Brazil.
“Our mission is to unite all Australians behind the Socceroos and the World Cup gives us a great opportunity to achieve that goal. We-ll take on the world-s best and show the values that make Australians proud as we take the entire country with us on what will be a great challenge and journey,” Gallop said.
“The quality of this group means that millions of Australians will watch TV, read the news in papers and online, and engage on social media during the World Cup next year. It-s a showcase of what football brings to Australia - a bridge to the world and finding our place in the global village.”
Australia-s 2014 FIFA World Cup matches June 13: Chile v Australia at Arena Pantanal, Cuiaba. 6pm kick off (local time) June 18: Australia v Netherlands at Estadio Beira-Rio, Porto Alegre. 1pm kick off (local time) June 23: Australia v Spain at Arena da Baixada, Curitiba. 1pm kick off (local time)
2014 FIFA World Cup Groups Group A: Brazil, Croatia, Mexico, Cameroon Group B: Spain, Netherlands, Chile, Australia Group C: Columbia, Greece, Cote d-Ivoire, Japan Group D: Uruguay, Costa Rica, England, Italy Group E: Switzerland, Ecuador, France, Honduras, Group F: Argentina, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Iran, Nigeria Group G: Germany, Portugal, Ghana, USA Group H: Belgium, Algeria, Russia, Korea Republic
AUSTRALIA-S HISTORY v GROUP STAGE OPPONENTS
CHILE 22-06-74 Draw 0-0 World Cup Berlin 24-04-96 Loss 0-3 Friendly Antofagasta 07-02-98 Loss 0-1 Optus World Series Melbourne 09-02-00 Loss 1-2 Four Nation Tournament Valparaiso Overall record: P4. W0-D1-L3
NETHERLANDS 04-06-06 Draw 1-1 Friendly Rotterdam 06-09-08 Win 2-1 Friendly Eindhoven 10-10-09 Draw 0-0 Friendly Sydney Overall record: P3. W1-D2-L0
SPAIN no previous encounters
Australia-s previous World Cup results:
1974 (West Germany) Group stage: 0-2 loss v East Germany Group stage: 0-3 loss v West Germany Group stage: 0-0 draw v Chile
2006 (Germany) Group stage: 3-1 win v Japan (Tim Cahill 2, John Aloisi) Group stage: 0-2 loss v Brazil Group stage: 2-2 draw v Croatia (Craig Moore pen, Harry Kewell) Rnd 16: 0-1 loss v Italy
2010 (South Africa) Group stage: 0-4 loss v Germany Group stage: 1-1 draw v Ghana (Brett Holman) Group stage: 2-1 win v Serbia (Tim Cahill, Brett Holman)