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I watched the draw this morning in-between reading the SMH. What made me laugh is the way the Germans think the world would consider it appropriate to have entertainment consisting of a magician/conjurer with a female assistant in black latex caged in a box with chains to background sounds of whips cracking. I think they must have been watching Benny Hill reruns again.

Poor draw for us. The Japanese have come along very well and Brazil is the worst outcome. 5-0 sounds about right.
I was up early this morning to watch the draw. Australia have drawn a tough pool. The other 3 teams ( Brazil , Croatia , Japan ) are all ranked in the top 20. Nevertheless , there's no reason why Australia can't get good results & finish 2nd in their pool & go through to the next round. It will be tough though.

I know there aren't too many soccer fans on this site , but myself and a few others are keen to see Australia do well in next years world cup ( June 2006 ). For a long time , soccer has been the sleeping giant of Australian sport. Qualifying for the world cup is the boost it needed.The timing is also very good , especially with recent results involving The Kangaroos , Wallabies & Aussie cricket team (Ashes series). The general interest & media attention in the months approaching the world cup will be enormous.

I'm still hopeful of getting myself over to Germany next year. May be tough for me , just having started a new job. There's always the 2007 cricket world cup in the Carribean.
The real World Cup being held in France in 2007 sounds better to me.

Go you Springboks.

Australia will probably perform better in 2006 than the 2007 cup.

Do you go for the Boks over Australia?
Australia is ranked well below their true place - this is due to the 8 year cycle and the way the rankings are calculated. You need to play at least 7 games in a year to achieve basic points - more than 7 is averaged. In 2002 or 2003 we only played 3 games - hence we are around 50 points below out true ranking.

A few years ago when we kicked ass in the confederations cup or whatever we had good results against brazil and japan and were beaten in the final in attrocious conditions. There is no reason we cant have a good showing and win a game or 2.
IMHO we will try and match the opponents in a deliberate physical game and try to out-muscle them. The bottom line is that we will win a lot of the midfield and defensive battles however an aging, brought out retirement, Recobo showed us up easily. Take a team like Brazil where they have brilliant players like him in every position and it will be a giant struggle. Teams like Croatia and Japan will have close fought encounters and the chance of making it to the second round is a slim chance. We can only hope Harry has a great balance of the season and comes out stronger as we lack a lot in attack.
It should also be mentioned that we will have an egeing team that will struggle to play three high quality games in 8 days or so.

Unless of course we concede the game to the Brazilians and give the old boys a rest. Not a good plan if it comes down to goal difference.

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