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Australian manager hits out at critics

For the first time since taking charge, Verbeek finds himself the target of critical discontent going into the World Cup qualifier against Qatar in Doha.

Questions have been raised about his lack of attacking adventure, especially during last weekend's 1-0 loss to Iraq in Dubai.

But the Dutchman went on the offensive, staunchly defending his tactics and saying those commentators in Australia slinging barbs had little idea of how to best deal with the Middle East's oppressive weather conditions and battle-hardened teams.

"I don't care what the people in Australia say. They are on the beach and surfing and here it is 35 degrees and we are all sweating when we don't do anything," Verbeek said.

"I just care what my players feel and we feel, and we do what we think will win the game.

"I'm 25 years in football. It's easy to sit on the beach and say 'why don't they attack'?

"I know enough about football to make the best selection and pick the best team. It's my responsibility. I don't have sleepless nights about this."

The Socceroos' qualification for the next stage of Asian World Cup qualifying would then hinge entirely on their final group match against China in Sydney on June 22, and perhaps on other teams' results.

Verbeek has maintained he will ultimately be judged by whether he gets the Socceroos to the 2010 World Cup finals, and said results were the most important consideration in Australia being able to reach South Africa.

"I go for the results. If it has be with five attacking players we do that," Verbeek said.

"If it has to be with one or two attacking players we do that also.

"Football is all about results."

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Tribal Football Staff

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