Teen’s crucial WC audition looms as answer to Rogic issue

Teen’s crucial WC audition looms as answer to Rogic issue

The countdown is officially on for the FIFA World Cup, as the Socceroos gear up for their farewell friendlies against New Zealand.

Graham Arnold’s side face the Kiwis in Brisbane on September 22, with the Aussies then heading to Auckland for a game at Eden Park.

Given it is the last international window before the big dance, plenty of eyeballs will be on the Socceroos to see who will prove they are worthy of a spot on the plane to Qatar.

analyses the four burning questions surrounding the Socceroos ahead of the trans-Tasman tussles.

The 34-year-old Queenslander has been a picture of consistency with Nagoya Grampus over those four years. In 2020, he set the record for the J1 League with 17 clean sheets.

Last year, he went even better to bag a whopping 21 clean sheets in 38 games, including a record nine clean sheets in a row at one stage.

But still, Langerak has managed just eight international caps in his career, owing to the vice-like grip captain Mat Ryan has on the Socceroos’ number one jersey.

Even when Ryan was struggling for minutes at his own club – in contrast to Langerak racking up minutes in Nagoya – Ryan was trusted to perform for the national team.

It is something he has done consistently. But there is simply no substitute for match minutes, and Ryan made the bold decision to leave Spain – and the chance to play against some of the world’s best – to join Copenhagen FC this season.

The game-time he is garnering, including in the Champions League, is a crucial boost to his World Cup preparations.

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