Socceroos hit with weird doping declare

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The Socceroos carry the hopes of a nation as they sq. off with Argentina within the World Cup spherical of 16 on Sunday morning.

A quarterfinal in opposition to the Netherlands is on the road after the Dutch simply dispatched of the USA within the early recreation.

RELATED: Easy methods to stream Australia-Argentina

All eyes at the moment are on Australia because it makes an attempt to document the largest win in our soccer historical past in opposition to the may of Lionel Messi. Kick-off is at 6am (AEDT).

4.40am — Socceroos reveal beginning 11

Graham Arnold has opted to start out Keanu Baccus forward of Craig Goodwin.

Goodwin scored the Socceroos’ first aim of the event in opposition to France however was changed by Baccus halfway by means of the latest recreation in opposition to Denmark.

Baccus impressed in that chance and can begin in a global for the very first time.

Socceroos XI: 1. Ryan (c), 2. Degenek, 4. Rowles, 19. Souttar, 16. Behich, 26. Baccus, 13. Mooy, 22. Irvine, 7. Leckie, 15. Duke, 14. McGree

3am (AEDT) – Graham Arnold rubbishes doping query

Graham Arnold has needed to bat away a very weird query forward of Australia’s showdown in opposition to Argentina.

The Socceroos boss sat in entrance of the world media when a Tunisian journalist, by means of a translator, quizzed the person in cost about rumours of failed drug checks throughout the Australian camp.

A confused Arnold shook his head as he responded: “I don’t know what you’re speaking about.”

In keeping with CODE Sports activities’ Adam Peacock, rumours had been swirling round on social media concerning a breaking story of 34 Australians having failed drug checks.

If that sounds acquainted it’s as a result of it isn’t new information. It’s not even associated to the Socceroos neither is it even the fitting code.

The story in query pertains to eight years in the past when the James Hird-led Essendon Soccer Membership had 34 gamers suspended for utilizing banned substances.

Arnold was proper to garbage the query with the social media hearsay mill not solely a mile off, but additionally years behind.

Maybe the Tunisia followers and journalist have been angling for a solution to get the Aussies eradicated and advance into second place within the group.

2am — Arnold: Argentina brings the most effective out of Australia

Australia coach Graham Arnold stated his facet weren’t intimidated by the may of soccer powerhouse Argentina forward of their World Cup conflict, insisting the South Individuals “deliver out the most effective in us”.

Pointing to final yr’s 2-0 Olympic overcome Argentina in addition to a 4-1 win within the Bicentennial Gold Cup in 1988, Arnold stated underdogs Australia have been “impressed” to face the two-time world champions.

“After I suppose again to my taking part in profession it is likely one of the highlights of my life, with the ability to play in opposition to Argentina,” Arnold stated on the eve of the last-16 match in Qatar.

“I simply suppose that Argentina deliver the most effective out of Australia. Our performances each time in opposition to Argentina have been very sturdy and superb.

“Enjoying in opposition to that sort of expertise, and that title I believe resonates proper the world over — It’s a soccer nation and it’s inspiring to play in opposition to them.”

Arnold stated the Socceroos, who have been swept apart 4-1 of their opening recreation in opposition to France earlier than profitable their subsequent two in opposition to Tunisia and Denmark, wanted a 120-minute efficiency.

“We have now to verify our brains are switched on. Once you loosen up, that’s once they hit you,” he stated.

Australia’s performances have captivated folks again dwelling, with followers celebrating in big numbers on the streets and Arnold stated he was proud that the crew had “united” the nation after the coronavirus pandemic.

“One factor that we now have achieved again in Australia is clearly reuniting the nation after Covid and reuniting our sport of soccer,” he stated.

“However we would like extra. We haven’t completed but. We’re turning as much as win one other recreation tomorrow.”

Arnold recalled his taking part in days, when Australia got here up in opposition to a Diego Maradona-led Argentina in World Cup play-offs in 1993.

Maradona arrange a aim in a 1-1 attract Sydney and Argentina received the return fixture 1-0.

“I don’t suppose he had that a lot of an affect — he arrange a aim in Sydney — however you couldn’t get close to him. You couldn’t kick him, he was that sensible,” stated Arnold.

— with AFP

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