The Australian team are nearing readiness for the upcoming football World Cup, with most of the players having already completed their preparations to spend June 2006 at a luxury resort. The team only needs to dispense with the formality of a series loss to Uruguay before team management can book the trip to Fiji.
“It’s the dream of every football player to book their place at the world’s biggest sporting event,” captain Craig Moore said. “But we’ve discovered it’s much easier to book a place at the Bula Beachside Bungalows.”
But the team’s experienced new coach Guus Hiddink, who guided South Korea to the semi-finals in 2002, refuses to give up on attending the tournament. The Dutchman is confident he’ll get a job with a decent team after he gives up on the Socceroos.
The Socceroos’ impending failure to qualify marks the ninth consecutive time that they have failed to spark a nationwide interest in their sport through their presence in a World Cup. But the head of the Football Federation Australia, John O’Neill, promised that everything will be different for the 2010 World Cup. “We’ve totally changed our qualifying route, so it won’t just come down to one match against a South American team,” he said. “Now we’ll have multiple matches in Asia before getting knocked out.”
“We refuse to give up on football becoming popular in this country, and we’re confident that if we can keep plugging away, we will continue to build the Socceroos’ place in the world game,” O’Neill said. “On its sidelines.”