Australia mindful of Chile's midfield threat
Posted on Jun 10 2014 | IANS
Rio de Janeiro, June 10 : Australia are conscious of the threat posed by Chile's myriad of midfielders, even if Jorge Sampaoli's team are without influential playmaker Arturo Vidal.
The 27-year-old Juventus star is in danger of missing Chile's Group B opener against the Socceroos in Cuiaba Friday with a knee injury, reports Xinhua.
But Socceroos captain Mile Jedinak said Marcelo Diaz, Charles Aranguiz and Felipe Gutierrez could step up in Vidal's absence.
"You go through their squad, he's one player -- he's important yes but they have many players at a good level, especially in his position," the Crystal Palace skipper said in comments published by FIFA.com Monday.
"They're very strong. We have to prepare for whether he's playing or not, we have to prepare for both scenarios. We know what they are like going forward, an aggressive press going forward, but we have to work on things like that. It's up to us to go out there and try and stop that."
Australia have been boosted by the apparent recovery of Mark Bresciano from a back injury. The 34-year-old entered the tournament under a fitness cloud but has trained freely in recent days.
Spain and the Netherlands, finalists at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, are also in Group B.