The exciting point Australia proved against Korea Republic
The pool of Caltex Socceroos talent is deep and growing deeper, says Graham Arnold, as eyes turn toward Australia’s World Cup qualification campaign.
An inexperienced Caltex Socceroos side were shaded 1-0 by Korea Republic in Friday night’s international friendly, with Arnold blooding several exciting fresh faces in Busan.
It was a match the Australia boss had earlier in the week identified as the unofficial beginning of his team’s journey to the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar.
And on the basis of an encouraging performance against the Taeguk Warriors, the 55-year-old will no doubt have some selection headaches when it comes to building his Caltex Socceroos squad for September's qualifiers.
“We spoke about building depth for our World Cup qualification campaign and tonight we showed Australia and we showed the world that we don’t and we won’t rely on 12 or 13 players to get us to the next World Cup,” Arnold said.
“We had four players make their international debut tonight. We went out there and took the ascendancy from the outset.
“We created some great chances and made it difficult for Korea to get any meaningful possession, especially in the first half.”
Arnold handed maiden international debuts to Andrew Redmayne, Brandon O’Neill, Brandon Borrello and Ryan Williams in Busan, while five of his starting eleven played their domestic football in the Hyundai A-League last season.
One of the debutants, Sydney FC custodian Andrew Redmayne, said the night was the proudest moment of his football career.
“It’s a moment I will remember forever,” Redmayne said.
“I can’t thank the boys, the staff and Arnie enough. It’s been an amazing week.
“I felt really comfortable out there tonight and it was a great experience for many of us who haven’t had that type of exposure at international level.”