Versatile Australia international Scott Chipperfield is of firm belief that the experiences of Germany 2006 has held today’s Socceroos squad in good stead.
The FC Basel star was a key member in the side that rose above expectations and took eventual champions Italy to the brink four years ago and he says those experiences and the fact most of the squad had been through a World Cup has been great leading into South Africa 2010.
''We know what to expect now,'' he told the Sydney Morning Herald. ''It's more relaxed. Back then I was a bit nervous before the first game, now it's more relaxed in the camp. We know there's a lot of pressure on us to do well this time - a lot of people would be disappointed if we didn't qualify for the knockout stage.''
Chipperfield was aware that opening-match opponents Germany have some dangerous players that will need to be watched closely and was sure that Joachim Low’s men would be right up for the challenge of taking on a determined Aussie outfit.
''(Miroslav) Klose has not had a good season for Bayern Munich, but playing for Germany he does well in the World Cup, so I expect him to be playing,'' he added. ''He's definitely a threat to us, someone you have got to respect.
''They have got some good players going forward. [Marko] Marin and [Mesut] Oezil are good players. Piotr Trochowski is quick, so they have a very good offensive team. It will be a big test for our defence.
''They might not be that experienced internationally, but half the team played for Bayern Munich in the Champions League final, so they have a lot of experience in big games,'' he says. ''I am sure they will be ready for us. They are a strong squad. They have a lot of players to choose from. [Bastian] Schweinsteiger had a great year with Bayern Munich in the midfield so I am sure he will play in the middle. They can cover the missing players.
''Now they have more ball players with Marin, Oezil and Trochowski and they have a lot more options going forward, a lot more flair in the team [than in the past] so it will be a hard game for us.”