Socceroos vs Jordan Asian Cup Tips, Predictions and Match Preview - Australia open Asian Cup title defence

Andrew Hendrie 4 Jan 2019
  • Socceroos take on Jordan in the Asian Cup on Sunday in Group B action
  • Australia begin their title defence
Socceroos face Jordan on Sunday

The Socceroos launch their Asian Cup title defence on Sunday when they square off against Jordan in the opening match of Group B.

Australia vs Jordan kicks off at 10.00pm AEST at Hazza Bin Zayed Stadium. The game will be broadcast live on Fox Sports in Australia.

Prediction

Match Preview


Four years on from their memorable maiden Asian Cup triumph in Sydney, the Socceroos begin their title defence in the UAE on Sunday against a Jordan side that comes into the tournament on the back of some eye-catching recent results.

Australia have been decimated by injuries in the lead-up to the competition, with Aaron Mooy, Daniel Arzani and Martin Boyle all ruled out, while winger Matthew Leckie has a hamstring issue and is unlikely to feature at all despite remaining with the squad.

With the absence of a recognised goalscorer at international level, it does make you wonder where the goals are going to come from in the Socceroos set up this tournament, with Jamie Maclaren the only real No. 9 - alongside new addition Apostolos Giannou, who arrived as a late replacement from club football in Cyprus for Boyle.

In saying that, the Socceroos head into the Asian Cup with confidence after dismantling Oman 5-0 a few days ago - but their opposition were woeful, it must be said, while the struggles in front of goal during World Cup qualifying and Russia 2018 won’t just disappear overnight.

When you factor in potential knockout matches coming up against Japan and Iran before the final, Australia will do remarkably well to go back-to-back in Asia.

But, before they can think about the knockout stages, Australia must overcome Jordan and the rest of their Group B rivals.

Jordan, coached by former Belgium assistant Vital Borkelmans, has been working their way back to top form after a big slide in recent year, and they come into this tournament with the view they can cause a few upsets.

Preparations have been very solid, with Jordan scoring a 2-1 win over World Cup finalists Croatia in October, while they also have a win over Denmark to their name - the team that Australian couldn’t beat in Russia. Also equipped with a win over India and draws against Albania, Saudi Arabia and China in recent weeks, Jordan cannot afford to be taken lightly.

Graham Arnold will ensure that’s not the case, but I think this could turn into a big battle for the Socceroos. Playing in the Middle East is never easy, especially against nations from there, and Jordan have proven hard to beat in their recent fixtures. I’m still going to back Australia home, but it might be a very close shave.

Match Odds


Australia - $1.33
Jordan - $9.00
Draw - $4.40

Stats


  • Australia and Jordan are level in their head-to-head at two wins apiece
  • Jordan have won both of their encounters in the Middle East
  • Australia won their last clash 5-1 in Sydney in 2016 World Cup qualifying

Tips



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Socceroos vs Jordan Asian Cup Tips, Predictions and Match Preview - Australia open Asian Cup title defence

The Socceroos launch their Asian Cup title defence on Sunday when they square off against Jordan in the opening match of Group B.

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