Caltex Socceroos captain Mark Milligan said his side are “very keen” to produce an emphatic response against Palestine at the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019™ on Friday evening (AEDT).
Australia were beaten 1-0 by Jordan in their first match of the tournament but Milligan is confident a big performance is just around the corner.
ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW: Your ultimate guide to Caltex Socceroos v Palestine
INJURY UPDATE: Boyle speaks after knee surgery
DON'T MISS IT: How to watch Caltex Socceroos v Palestine
“The boys are very keen to turn around the first result and we definitely know that we have that within us,” he told reporters.
“We know where we fell short and where we need to be better and I think, you know, getting the chance quickly is good.
“The great thing about football is when we go out tomorrow night and put in a good performance, the first game will be a distant memory and we’ll move forward.”
Milligan said a series of “very intense” sessions had Graham Arnold’s side primed for the Palestine test.
“The morale in the squad has been very good,” he added.
“When we’ve been on the field, everything has been very intense.
“We’re still very confident in what we’re doing and the way we do it.”
And the versatile veteran said that while the Caltex Socceroos were more than aware of the strengths that Palestine possess, keeping focus on their own objectives was crucial.
“While we’re very aware of their strengths and weaknesses, I think, again, the main focus has had to be on us doing things the way we want to but doing them better,” he said.
“We need to focus on what we do with the ball and the other night, that wasn’t good enough.
“We’ll face different challenges [to what we faced against Jordan] and we need to be prepared for it, which we are.
“Most importantly, we need to execute what we do well.”