Jordan vs. Australia  2 - 1

Article

AFC World Cup qualifying wrap: South Korea held, Iran lose

11 September 2012 18:38

South Korea were held 2-2 away to Uzbekistan in Asian World Cup qualifying on Tuesday, as Lebanon upset Iran 1-0 at home.

An own goal from Ki Sung-Yueng saw hosts Uzbekistan take the lead in the 14th minute of the match at the Paxtakor Markaziy Stadion, Tashkent.

The visitors levelled three minutes before half-time through Kwak Tae-Hwi, and they went in front for the first time when Lee Dong-Gook scored on 57 minutes.

Their lead proved short-lived, with Sanjar Tursunov netting the equaliser and earning a point for Uzbekistan on the hour mark.

Elsewhere, Roda Antar's 27th-minute goal helped unfancied Lebanon down regional heavyweights Iran 1-0 the Camille Chamoun Sports City Stadium in Beirut.

Later, Jordan dealt Australia's qualification hopes a blow by recording a 2-1 win in Amman.

A penalty from Hassan Abdel Fattah and Amer Deeb goal in the second half at King Abdullah International Stadium sealed the points for Jordan, with Archie Thompson netting late on in vain for Australia.

Finally, Japan tightened their grip on qualifying Group B with a 1-0 win at home to Iraq, Ryoichi Maeda scoring the only goal in the 25th minute of the match in Saitama.

Article

Kruse eyes off Australian start

10 September 2012 00:22

Australia attacker Robbie Kruse hopes he has done enough to earn a Socceroos start in the vital World Cup qualifier against Jordan.

The 23-year-old has started in consecutive international friendlies but was used as a substitute in Australia's opening two fourth-round qualifiers.

Kruse combined well with Luke Wilkshire down the right hand side in Australia's comfortable 3-0 win over Lebanon on Friday morning.

And he is hopeful that performance was good enough to convince coach Holger Osieck to hand him a starting spot in Amman.

"We play football obviously because we want to play. Playing for your national team is a massive honour," Kruse said.

"I've started the last two games and if the boss gives me the nod to play again, I'll be thrilled with it.

"In the end, it's all about us qualifying for Rio whether it's me playing or anyone else. As long as we get the three points, that's all that matters."

The Socceroos are aware of the importance of the Group B encounter having collected just two points from their first two outings.

Fortuna Dusseldorf attacker Kruse said winning the clash against Adnan Hamad's team was crucial in Australia's bid to qualify for Brazil 2014.

"We know the real test is on Tuesday and it's come to the point where it's vital for us to get the three points. It's going to be a tough test as well," he said.

"The conditions are hard and Jordan are going to be a tough team to play against. As long as we prepare properly, hopefully we can get the win and hopefully put in a good performance as well."

Australia defender Jade North also spoke about how difficult he expects the contest to be in hot conditions.

"It's going to be a tough game. Obviously we're playing them in their own backyard so we've done our homework. We've been training hard and we know what to expect," he said.

"These Middle Eastern teams are quite similar. We've played a number of teams from the Middle East now so we know what we're up against.

"It's all about turning up on the day and putting in a good performance."