Neill backs Socceroos
Lucas Neill is backing Australia to reach the knockout rounds despite only amassing one point so far.
By Razwan Mirza
Last Updated: 20/06/10 4:24pm
Australia captain Lucas Neill is backing his side to reach the knockout rounds of the World Cup despite only amassing one point from their two Group D games so far.
The Socceroos grabbed a vital 1-1 draw against Ghana on Saturday, despite being down to 10 men. The point against the West Africans followed the side's dismal 4-0 hammering against Germany in their opening match.
Ghana currently lead the hotly contested group with four points from Germany and Serbia on three with Australia trailing with just the single point.
Neill still believes Australia can repeat their performance at the 2006 World Cup and reach the second round if they can beat Serbia in Nelspruit on Wednesday and hope the Germany-Ghana match does not end in a draw at Soccer City on the same night.
"There is unbelievable belief within the team," Neill said.
"We are obviously hurt and we've given ourselves a mountain to climb in the first game, but we're still here and the nation shouldn't give up on us because we haven't given up."
Neill is adamant that the Socceroos can fight their way out of the group, despite finishing a second match at the tournament a player down after red cards.
"We want Germany to go out and perform the way they did against us, create opportunities, be clinical and score lots of goals and then hopefully that will bring Ghana's goal difference into the minuses," said the Galatasaray stalwart.
"And we need to get goals against Serbia and create chances to finish them off."
Australia will be without Harry Kewell after the striker was handed a one-match ban for his sending off for handling on the line against Ghana.
Craig Moore will also miss the Serbia game after the experienced defender picked up his second yellow card of the tournament in the same game, ruling him out.
"We have one game left and in football we've seen a lot of things happen. It's all possible," said Moore.
"We've been criticised for un-Australian performances and it would be certainly un-Australian to go into that last game giving up, we certainly won't do that."
Tim Cahill, who was banned from the match against Ghana for his red card tackle against Germany, said he will relish his opportunity to play against Serbia.
"As a player I've taken it on the chin and got on with it. One thing I've made sure is to show respect to the referee and the fans," the midfielder said.
"Whether it's right or wrong I've got a another crack at Serbia."