Thursday, November 17, 2005

The Australian Socceroos are going to the World Cup!

Just moments ago, we got the news off of the web that the Australian Socceroos, had won a penalty shoot-out against Uraguay, and by winning the 2nd leg of the double-header had one the final place in our qualifying group and a place in the 2006 football World Cup! The biggest sporting event tournament in the world, just over on the continent in Germany throughout June/July next year - and Australia will be there!! Everyone here is just so excited about it, as we haven't been there in 31 years!

To give you an idea of the excitement and tension, below is the transcript from the Football Australia text commentary which streamed over their website as it happened at Stadium Australia. We all kept an eye on it from work here at the LDA throughout the long morning as Australia went from a 1-0 lead at full-time - thereby making it a 1-1 all draw overall after the first match in Montevideao. The game then went through extra-time, with still no change in the score - so then we were on to penalty shots. Below is how we saw it happen (read from the bottom upwards)..


John Aloisi puts the final and decisive penalty into the back of the goal!!

Mark Schwarzer has relived 1993 all over again with two memorable saves in the shootout.

This is one of the proudest saves of my life, the crowd is going
absolutely beserk.

John Aloisi - goal YES WE ARE GOING TO THE WORLD CUP - 4-2
Marcelo Zalayeta - saved 3-2
Mark Viduka - miss 3-2
Fabian Estoyonoff - goal 3-2
Tony Vidmar - goal 3-1
Gustavo Varela - goal 2-1
Lucas Neill - goal 2-0
Dario Rodriguez - saved 1-0
Harry Kewell - goal 1-0
Australia will start off
Its going to be heartbreak for one team in this most cruellest of ways.
120' It's down to penalties.
119' Schwarzer is able to grab a Zalayeta header that looks
goalbound.
117' Morales shot across the face... that was close.
116' Skoko volley goes well wide.
115' Cahill cross, Lugano great tackle to deny Viduka.
114' Skoko wins corner... but foul called on Cahill.
110' Australia sub - Emerton off - Skoko on
....


From what i've read on the web this afternoon, the two saves by Australian (& Middlesborough) keeper Mark Schwarzer saved the day - however unlike in 1993 when Schwarzer made the required saves and our strikers could not find the net, this year they found their mark..

So once we find out about the final draw on December the 9th, we'll be trying to get ourselves over to Germany next year to be in the same city when one of their Pool matches is played, and you never know, maybe into the final rounds as well!!

-shane

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