Australia coach Pim Verbeek Tuesday piled more pressure on Japan ahead of their World Cup qualifier and indulged in more of the mind games that have been a feature in the lead-up to the game.
The Dutchman and his players have repeatedly said the onus Tanie stroje piłkarskie is on Japan as the home side and second behind unbeaten Australia in the qualifying group to take all three points on Wednesday in Yokohama.
“I just want to repeat: I think the pressure is still on Japan. They have to win. We’d like to win, but we don’t have to win. Japan will have serious problems if they don’t win,” said Verbeek ahead of the sell-out clash.
“We have three home games to go. I think we need six points to qualify. There’s no pressure on our side. The pressure is still on Japan, especially an away game against Uzbekistan, which is not very easy.”
Australia lead Group 1 with nine points, followed by Japan on seven and Qatar on four. Bahrain and Uzbekistan each have one point.
The top two teams from the group qualify for the 2010 World Cup finals in South Africa, while the third-placed team has to go through play-offs.
Verbeek said he did not expect his players, most of who play koszulka reprezentacji Niemcy na mundial 2018 for sides in Europe, to be intimidated by the expectant capacity home crowd.
“My players are used to playing for 60,000, 70,000 or 80,000 people, so they are looking forward to play in this fantastic stadium.”
Verbeek was full of praise for his veteran goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer.
“He is a great goalkeeper, great professional,” the coach said.
“So far in this campaign, he didn’t get a goal against so he has three clean sheets. That shows his qualities. I think he keeps his clean sheet tomorrow.”