Australia went down easily against Germany in Durban but why? Some stats and figures as to why the Australians were beaten 4-0 by Germany in their opening World Cup game in Durban.
- Germany's starting eleven players are battle-hardened professionals having played a total of 237 Club games since 1 January 2010 in lead-up to the World Cup finals compared to Australia's starting eleven who combined played 162 Club games. That is an average of 21.54 games per German player versus 14.42 games for the Australian players.
- 3 of Australia's starting eleven played under 10 games since 1 January, 2010. If you take away Mark Schwarzer's incredible 33 games since January 1, the average drops to under 13 games average.
- Australia's average age for the starting eleven was just under 31 whereas Germany's average age was 24 years.
It showed that Australia was very much Dad's army against a youthful and sharp Germany. Australia were second to the ball, slow to pick up German forwards and generally looked like a very rusty and dispirited team.
Pim Verbeek's decisions baffled almost everybody. Dropping Josh Kennedy to play with Tim Cahill and Richard Garcia up front was a monumental gaffe. It deprived Australia of its most lethal player in Cahill who was sorely out of position playing in a very unfamiliar role up front. Garcia is not a striker, he plays all his Club football as a wide midfielder.
Why have Kewell there in South Africa if Verbeek does not use him? Kewell is either fit enough to play or if not then it is a waste of money having him there and depriving someone like a Tommy Oar or Scott McDonald who are fit and sharp, and who would have been able to offer playing options.
The ploy to use defensive midfielders throughout the whole match clearly didn't work as the Germans made training cones out of the Socceroos players in the centre of the pitch and Verbeek may have to tinker with his formation if results are to come against Ghana and Serbia.
Unless Australia can stage a massive comeback and beat Ghana and Serbia to qualify for next round, last night's performance has surely put Australia back 10 years in terms of our position in World football and furthermore seriously undermines the 2022 World Cup bid!