Syria vs Australia

Jassim Bin Hamad Stadium is the venue as Syria and Australia go head-to-head in a high-stakes Asian Cup Group B showdown.

Despite failing to produce a shot on target and generating a dismal 0.14 xG in their Group B curtain-raising fixture against Uzbekistan, Syria avoided defeat at the start of their third consecutive Asian Cup appearance. However, a scoreless draw in the opening game condemned the Syrians to a sixth straight winless outing at the final tournament (D2, L4), diminishing their chances of making it out of the group stages for the first time in the nation’s history. Beating a more heavily fancied Australia has become imperative for the ‘Qasioun Eagles,’ who have only scored six times in their last seven matches in the competition proper. But that’s the least of their problems as they vie for their first-ever victory against Australia (D1, L2).

Australia’s dominant H2H record doesn’t mean they can afford to take Syria lightly, knowing they’ve failed to keep a clean sheet in all three previous encounters, including a memorable 3-2 victory in the 2019 Asian Cup group stages. Graham Arnold’s side lived up to their tag as pre-game favorites in their Group B opener, netting two unanswered second-half goals to beat India 2-0 and extend their form resurgence to five consecutive wins. Defensive solidity has provided the means to an end, with the ‘Socceroos’ tallying four clean sheets across those five triumphs after conceding in six straight internationals beforehand. Equally brilliant in the front third, Aussies have bagged 2+ goals in each win during that sequence, highlighting the potential for another emphatic result.

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