How Jordan's win over Syria opens door for Socceroos


Australia can no longer top their AFC Asian Cup group after Jordan's win over Syria, but that may not necessarily be the worst outcome.

'The Chivalrous' backed up their opening 1-0 win over the Socceroos with a 2-0 victory in Al Ain on Friday (AEDT) to all but seal top spot in the group.

While that means Australia can no longer top their group due to their head-to-head record with Jordan, second-place actually looks more enticing for Graham Arnold's men.

If the Socceroos had finished first in Group B, they were on track to face heavyweights Japan in the quarter-finals and then a potential semi-final against tournament favourites Iran.

A potential second-round clash with Japan looms in the unlikely event the Samurai Blue finish second in their group.

But a round of 16 clash with Uzbekistan looks the most likely option after the central Asian nation defeated Oman 2-1 on Thursday (AEDT).

From there, Australia's quarter-final opponents would be the winner of a clash between the winners of Group A and the third-place team from Groups C, D or E.

India had looked the best option to top Group A after their thumping 4-1 win over Thailand but the UAE's 2-0 win over the Indians on Friday (AEDT) has lifted the host nation into top spot in the group.

Thailand are also on three points after bouncing back from their opening match defeat with a 1-0 win over Bahrain.

Regardless of the outcome, the most likely path has Australia not facing one of the traditional powerhouses of Asian football until the semi-finals when Korea Republic, inspired by Tottenham star Son Heung-min, will probably lie in wait.

First though, Australia have to bounce back from their loss to Jordan with victory over Palestine in Dubai on Friday.

Captain Mark Milligan was talking confidently on the eve of the game, promising he and his players were ready to make amends.

"Everybody is very aware of the situation and very keen to get back onto the field and turn it around," Milligan said.

"The great thing about football is when we go out tomorrow night and put in a good performance, the first game will be a distant memory and we'll move forward."

Source AAP