Three points are a must says Moore
Socceroos captain for the match against Kuwait - Craig Moore - believes three points is a must for his team in Thursday night’s Asian Cup qualifier in Canberra.
Socceroos captain for the match against Kuwait - Craig Moore - believes three points is a must for his team in Thursday night-s Asian Cup qualifier in Canberra.
Australia sits in third position on the group table after playing just one game (0-0 against Indonesia), with Kuwait a point behind them after losing 1-0 at home against Oman.
A win will move the Socceroos into top spot of their qualifying group, which will see the top two from each group to the 2011 Asian Cup finals in Qatar.
Despite Australia again going into the game with a squad made up totally of Hyundai A-League players, Moore has no doubts that Australia can achieve the win they need and will put in a good performance for the expected bumper crowd at Canberra Stadium.
“It-s a game that we must win,” Moore told the media on arrival in the nation-s capital. “You look at all your home games whether it be the Asian Cup or World Cup qualifiers and home games you really must be looking to take maximum points if you want to look to qualify and do well in these types of tournaments.
“I think they will be fine. The only way you can get the experience is by playing games and the squad we-ve got I feel is good enough to go out there and perform well and get the result we need.”
After a fairly defensive minded performance against Indonesia in January, Moore is confident that the Australian team will be more attacked minded, given they at least this time have a few days to prepare for the match.
“Home and away football is completely different,” he said. “I thought that was a good point (against Indonesia) away from home. It was a horrible surface, whereas I am sure here, we-ll have a great surface; home crowd and you know the onus is on us to get at them.
“With the A-League squad in the last game we virtually had a 40-minute training session, so there will be a bit more time together and hopefully the performance and result will be better as well.
“We-ll have a lot more time to go through a lot of things; our shape and the way that we will attack. These are all the things that I think the manager will have under control and we-ll go through over the next few days.”
Asked if he thought the A-League players have a point to prove on Thursday night, Moore believes this group of players will look at it like any other game and go out to win it.
“No I don-t think they have a point to prove. It-s a great honour to be selected for your national team; all the boys will be absolutely delighted with that and we-ll look to go there like I said and do a proper job.
“There is no extra pressure because we are here playing as an A-League team, as opposed to the European-based boys.
“It-s a fixture that we need to go and win and that-s the way we-ll treat it.”
Moore himself is feeling in good nick for the game and while admitting he has had a quieter week than he would have liked, following their defeat in the Preliminary Final, he is very much looking forward to getting back in the National Team colours.
“I-ve had a bit of a quieter week with getting knocked out (of Hyundai A-League finals) the week before, but it-s nice to step up for international duty again.
“I am feeling fine. Like I said our season is not a really long one in terms of the amount of games that you play. So I am holding up well, had a week which wasn-t an intense week, but managed to get a few hit-out-s and I-ll be ready come kick-off time on Thursday night.”
The former Glasgow Rangers skipper is also looking forward to playing in Canberra once more, having lived here as a teenager, while at the AIS.
“It-s nice to come and play in different areas and for certain players as well, you get the opportunity to play in front of family. It was many years before I had that opportunity in Brisbane, so yeah it-s nice to get out and play in different stadiums.
“I was here at the institute, but that was a long, long time ago, but I am looking forward to playing here again.”
Meanwhile, Danny Allsopp (facial injury), Billy Celeski (hip injury) and Scott Jamieson (foot injury) who all played in the Hyundai A-League 2009 Grand Final on Saturday night have been deemed unfit to play, after a routine medical assessment. No replacements have been named.
Tickets are still available for the match, which kicks-off at 8.00pm AEDT. Tickets are available from Ticketek (web: www.ticketek.com.au, Phone: 132 894 and all Ticketek agencies)