There are many people in Australia who like nothing more than to berate the so-called Euro snobs amongst us for their patronising attitude towards our football.
No sooner do these Eurocentrics dare criticise any aspect of Australian football than the diehards start complaining about condescendence.
It's as if Aussie football is beyond reproach.
Recent events would suggest that Australian fans are just as guilty of cockiness and snobbery.
Let's take last week's 2014 FIFA World Cup qualifier between Australia and Japan in Brisbane.
At the end of a magnificent contest that finished 1-1 and enhanced the reputation of both sides, everybody would have been entitled to hail the Socceroos' team for outplaying Japan before the game changed when substitute Mark Milligan was sent off early in the second half.
The fans also would have been even more impressed with the way the home team stubbornly refused to buckle under the considerable pressure applied by Japan in the second half to come away with a deserved share of the spoils.
The 90 minutes showed the two sides of the current Australia national team: skill and character.
The boisterous Brisbane crowd loved it and got its money's worth. It was a good night out.
But this was not enough to appease the critics at large who seem to expect the Socceroos to play like Spain or Barcelona every time they take the field.
These cognoscenti amazingly chose not to dwell on the game's many positives but on the misguided notion that Australia's style of play is too old fashioned, too aggressive and too unappealing and won't get us anywhere in the long run.
What a load of rubbish!
Australia played some decent and very modern stuff that had the technically gifted Japanese at sixes and sevens for most of the first half.
I'm not sure about the 'unappealing' bit either because the Socceroos produced a mixture of in-your-face aggression and some polished passing right through midfield, which is where Japan usually excels.
And if Holger Osieck's men manage to get to the finals in Brazil, one would not be able to say with a straight face that the team was getting nowhere.
What these critics must understand is that every team plays to its strengths and there is no point expecting the Socceroos to be what they are not and can never be.
The point was made that Australia as a proud sporting nation should aspire to play the game like the Spaniards, Germans, Brazilians or Argentines do.
The critics conveniently forget that in terms of football hierarchy Australia is very much in the second division, essentially because of its small population and a lack of a true football culture.
Wondering why the Socceroos - recently described by Tim Cahill as an "okay team" - can't perform like the game's big guns is as crass as Alaves fans asking why their team can't play like Real Madrid.
The Socceroos' approach against Japan was only defensive when it needed to be, but never negative.
Even with 10 men Australia still tried to win the match ... and nearly did so too.
It certainly was not a case of parking the bus and hoping for the best without bothering to attack, as Chelsea did in the latter stages of the UEFA Champions League against Barcelona and Bayern Munich.
The Blues have a squad of players that would walk into most teams in the world yet they had no qualms about doing whatever they thought was necessary to win the trophy.
I'm sure that no Chelsea fan would have begrudged Roberto Di Matteo's negative tactics that brought home the glittering prize.
Netherlands, for so long the epitome of what makes the game so beautiful, abandoned its famed principles and adopted a thuggish behaviour in the 2010 World Cup final against Spain before it got what it deserved when Andres Iniesta scored a late winner.
Greece and England have no hesitation in adopting a defensive game that best suits their needs at EURO 2012.
The Greeks have reached the quarter-finals and the English should join them barring a defeat to Ukraine.
Yet here in Australia the Socceroos hold Japan to a thoroughly deserved draw in an absolute belter of a match that would have done more for the game than $10 million worth of promotion and there are complaints because Holger's heroes were not pretty or sophisticated enough.
Australia is fairly good at cricket, cycling, swimming and rugby but unfortunately football is not its forte. Not yet, anyway.
And the sooner we stop dreaming and start recognising our limitations the more likely we are to bridge the technical gap that separates us from the giants of the game.
Until that happens we could do worse than welcome whatever successes that come our way with open arms.
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