Football Alive

Australia vs Cameroon Review

First Half

A very open start to the game, with Australia creating a fair few opportunities and getting on top early. However, Cameroon fought their way back into the content quickly, winning several set pieces and getting forward more than Australia perhaps expected them to. From that point, the game settled into a sort of free-flowing football. This intensity continued for a little while however the evenness of the teams began to slow the pace of the game, with both sides becoming fearful of taking risks after the game’s intense start. Shots became few and far between, as both teams struggled to create clear cut chances and the game became a bit more of a physical contest. However, all Cameroon needed was one chance to change the game. Australia switched off, and Cameroon made us pay to take the half time lead. Trent Sainsbury and Alex Gersbach the only standouts for Australia in what turned out to be an uninspiring first half. HT Australia 0-1 Cameroon

Second Half

A blistering start to the second half from the Socceroos, with a great chance scuppered by Tomi Juric. The game remained quite even apart from that, however a penalty for Australia, due to a challenge on Alex Gersbach, put us right back in the game. After the VAR confirmed the pen, Mark Milligan calmly slotted it away to get us level. The goal did little to dampen Cameroon’s spirits however, with Aboubakar remaining ever dangerous. After the introduction of James Troisi, Cameroon began sitting a bit further back, seemingly content to momentarily keep the game at 1-1. The referee keeping his whistle firmly in his pocket too didn’t help the Socceroos, with several clear fouls not given. That said, Australia began to press higher and, despite some quick Cameroonian counter attacks, the game was played more and more in Cameroon’s half, with Tommy Rogic able to exert more influence on the game. This was especially the case after the introduction of Tim Cahill. However, just as had it done so many times before, the tide turned again as Cameroon got back on top of proceedings, lifted by the crowd urging them on. The Socceroos then had to hold off a rampaging Cameroonian side, leading to some nervy moments. Two injury time free kicks for Ange’s men led to nothing, as the game ended level. A fair result in the end, FT Australia 1-1 Cameroon. Best on Ground for the Socceroos: Trent Sainsbury and Alex Gersbach.

What now?

The Socceroos need a win against Chile to progress to the semi-finals. If we win by two or more goals, we’re through, regardless of the result between Cameroon and Germany. If we win by a goal, then we need Cameroon to defeat Germany by two, no more, no less, and we’d be through. Another other result and we’d be out. It is unlikely though that a Cameroon win over Germany would be by more than a goal, so our best bet is to beat Chile by two and confirm our passage through to likely play the winner of Mexico and Russia (or Mexico if the game is tied).

Expect minor changes only for the Socceroos going into the Chile game. Gersbach will likely retain his starting spot after a great performance last night, and so too will Robbie Kruse, although Ange may opt to start Jackson Irvine for a change. Defensively, Milos Degenek’s performance last night has probably saved him from axing, although Bailey Wright may be replaced by one of the McGowans. The back three is here to stay, so the most drastic change foreseeable for the Socceroos would be if Ange decided to play only one attacking midfielder (Rogic), and instead replace Kruse with a striker, perhaps Jamie Maclaren. This is unlikely but could boost our chances of a big win against the Copa America champions.

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