March 27, 2015 11:55:42 UK
Captain Mile Jedinak says Australia have reached “the next level” after holding world champions Germany to a 2-2 draw.
The Socceroos’ fortunes have been transformed this year, to the point where their skipper admits he was disappointed not to have beaten Germany in Kaiserslautern. Last year was a tough one for the national team, with just one win in 11 games and a poor World Cup where they lost all their three group games.
Coach Ange Postecoglou, though, was convinced his long-term strategy was sound and he proved his point when the Socceroos won the Asian Cup on home soil in January.
Five wins and a draw from their seven matches so far this year have the squad in confident mood as they travel to Skopje to take on FYR Macedonia in a friendly and then start building towards the 2018 World Cup qualifiers starting in June.
Australia are 2.30 to beat FYR Macedonia, who are 2.90 with the draw 3.20.
Crystal Palace midfielder Jedinak gave his side the lead against Germany with a superb curling free-kick over the wall. They were nine minutes away from securing victory when Lukas Podolski equalised, leaving Jedinak a little frustrated.
“If we really are going to take it up to the next level you have to be a little disappointed that we didn’t hold on, considering the amount of opportunities we had,” he admitted. “We knew it was never going to be easy but the boys were really brave and probably a little bit unlucky not to win the game.”
Jedinak added: “This result will take us to the next level. I think everybody, if they didn’t believe before, they will now.
“I think that everybody gave it their utmost. You expect that, but to actually do it and to do it against quality opposition like Germany, the boys should all be really proud of that.”
The Socceroos are 3.20 to beat FYR Macedonia 1-0.
What’s your view? You can get involved and debate this story with bet365 on Twitter, Facebook & Google+.
View all Soccer betting