Home Australia How the Socceroos made a HUGE mistake with their World Cup qualifying match against Lebanon – as Today’s Sarah Abo sledges the team

How the Socceroos made a HUGE mistake with their World Cup qualifying match against Lebanon – as Today’s Sarah Abo sledges the team

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The Socceroos take on Lebanon in a World Cup qualifier on Thursday at Sydney's Commbank Stadium - without you knowing it (pictured, skipper Mat Ryan)

On Thursday night at Sydney’s Commbank Stadium, the Socceroos take on Minnows Lebanon in a World Cup qualifier starting at 8pm – without you knowing it.

Bad publicity from Football Australia regarding the international match – coupled with the fact the match is in competition with the AFL and NRL – will almost certainly result in poor TV numbers on Channel 10.

Why compete directly with Australia’s two most popular football codes for match day viewership?

The question many fans want to know is: why wasn’t football played Wednesday night at the same venue?

The Socceroos take on Lebanon in a World Cup qualifier on Thursday at Sydney's Commbank Stadium - without you knowing it (pictured, skipper Mat Ryan)

The Socceroos take on Lebanon in a World Cup qualifier on Thursday at Sydney’s Commbank Stadium – without you knowing it (pictured, skipper Mat Ryan)

Graham Arnold's men are expected to win comfortably, with the Cedars ranked 115th in the world according to FIFA (pictured, uncapped Australian midfielder Josh Nisbet)

Graham Arnold's men are expected to win comfortably, with the Cedars ranked 115th in the world according to FIFA (pictured, uncapped Australian midfielder Josh Nisbet)

Graham Arnold’s men are expected to win comfortably, with the Cedars ranked 115th in the world according to FIFA (pictured, uncapped Australian midfielder Josh Nisbet)

Lebanon have nothing to lose and will enjoy being underdogs (photo, training at Commbank Stadium this week)

Lebanon have nothing to lose and will enjoy being underdogs (photo, training at Commbank Stadium this week)

Lebanon have nothing to lose and will enjoy being underdogs (photo, training at Commbank Stadium this week)

Graham Arnold’s men are expected to win comfortably, with the Cedars ranked 115th in the world, according to FIFA.

Like many of the Socceroos’ opponents, they will be on the back foot from the opening whistle and should be difficult to overcome.

The last time Australia played at home four months ago, they beat Bangladesh 7-0 in front of a raucous Melbourne crowd.

With another World Cup qualifier against Lebanon in Canberra on March 26, Arnold will expect urgency from his starting XI.

After a strong season in the A-League with Perth Glory, Adam Taggart emerges as Arnold’s choice to start at the top of the final third.

Meanwhile, Channel Nine identity Sarah Abo unleashed a cheeky sled at the Socceroos just hours before kick-off.

While interviewing Matildas vice-captain Emily van Egmond on the Today show on Thursday morning, Abo began discussing the men’s national team.

“The Socceroos are obviously playing tonight, but people are kind of wondering: Soccerwhos? she joked.

“Look, good luck, Socceroos. I mean, they also have a big game against Lebanon. So, you know, we’re here to support them as much as possible. And yes, they are doing a wonderful job,” replied a van Egmond diplomat.

” I’m joking of course. We love the Socceroos almost as much as the Matildas,” Abo said.

Channel Nine's Sarah Abo has cheekily referred to Graham Arnold's team as 'Soccerwhos' ahead of their World Cup qualifier.

Channel Nine's Sarah Abo has cheekily referred to Graham Arnold's team as 'Soccerwhos' ahead of their World Cup qualifier.

Channel Nine’s Sarah Abo has cheekily referred to Graham Arnold’s side as ‘Soccerwhos’ ahead of their World Cup qualifier.

Bizarrely, the Socceroos are playing at the same time as key NRL and AFL matches in Sydney and Melbourne on Thursday night.

Bizarrely, the Socceroos are playing at the same time as key NRL and AFL matches in Sydney and Melbourne on Thursday night.

Bizarrely, the Socceroos are playing at the same time as key NRL and AFL matches in Sydney and Melbourne on Thursday night.

Co-host Karl Stefanovic then had fun, saying: “I don’t think that’s true at all.”

Van Egmond’s television appearance follows the Matilda’s draw alongside the United States, Germany and an African country qualified for the Paris Olympics in July.

The veteran midfielder said she was excited about the development – ​​but also nervous.

“The Olympics is an extremely competitive tournament,” van Egmond said.

“You saw how difficult it was for all the European teams to qualify, with England and Sweden particularly absent.

“For us it’s just about focusing on ourselves. We are obviously used to this sort of thing.

“We did well in Tokyo, and now in Paris we have a new challenge that excites us.”

Speaking about the absence of captain Sam Kerr, who will not feature due to an anterior cruciate ligament injury, van Egmond said the striker remains a vital part of the team.

“He’s our boss,” she said. “Sam may not be here on the field with us, but from afar she’s definitely playing a role and we’re very grateful.”

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