Josh Kennedy earned a place alongside the likes of John Aloisi and Mark Schwarzer upon emerging as Australia’s FIFA World Cup qualification hero in June.
BRASILIA: Josh Kennedy earned a place alongside the likes of John Aloisi and Mark Schwarzer upon emerging as Australia-s FIFA World Cup qualification hero in June.
It was Kennedy-s late goal against Iraq that sealed Australia-s passage to Brazil and three months further on, the 31-year-old striker is desperate to add more to his Socceroos CV.
“It was definitely (the goal against Iraq) a moment I-ll never forget,” said Kennedy.
“It was fantastic, I think I was in the right place, the right time and the game was set up perfect for me coming on the pitch.
“I still look at it and still watch the video every now and then and show the kids and it-s definitely a great feeling.
“It-s great to be back and that goal was a great first game to come back with.
“I-d love now to kick on with things where I did beforehand and hopefully start scoring and continue it and lead in good form into the FIFA World Cup.”
Another of Australia-s heroes against Iraq and, indeed, throughout June-s run of FIFA World Cup qualifiers was defender Sasa Ognenovski.
Like Kennedy, Ognenovski spent significant time away from the Socceroos set up before re-emerging in June, where his combination in central defence with Lucas Neill was a cornerstone of Australia-s successes.
The challenge of Brazil and their all-star strike force led by prodigious talent Neymar will be a different task for Ognenovski all together, but one the Umm Salal defender is relishing.
“It-s a fantastic game to be a part of,” said Ognenovski.
“It-s a good test for us, to see where we-re at amongst the top nations in the world.
“I think you have to pay them respect, because of who they are, the footballing nation they are.
“I think if you pay them too much respect you can get caught on the back foot and they can win easily.
“I think we-ve got to play to our strengths and hopefully expose some of the weaknesses that they have and hope that they don-t expose some of our weaknesses.
“It-s just a matter of being concentrated for the full 90 minutes and doing the best you can, really.”
The Socceroos will play 2014 FIFA World Cup hosts and five-time FIFA World Cup winners Brazil at Brasilia-s Estadio Nacional Mané Garrincha on Saturday 7 September.
Kick off is at 4.15pm local time (Sunday 8 September, 5.15am AEST). The match will be broadcast live and exclusive on Fox Sports 3HD and Fox Sports 3 from 5am AEST.