WORLD CUP 2014: Socceroos have nothing to lose, Thompson says

Ange Postecoglou's decision to go with youth over experience has given him a “get out of jail free card," Thompson says. Picture: GETTY IMAGES

Ange Postecoglou's decision to go with youth over experience has given him a “get out of jail free card," Thompson says. Picture: GETTY IMAGES

ANGE Postecoglou has no pressure and nothing to lose in Brazil, according to veteran Socceroo Archie Thompson.

The Melbourne Victory striker, capped 54 times in the green and gold and holder of the all-time goalscoring record for an international match, said the decision to go with youth over experience had given Postecoglou a “get out of jail free card”.

“Obviously he’s listened to what some people in the public and the media have wanted for a long time and now he goes into the World Cup with literally no pressure,” the Border’s own Thompson said.

“Ange is going over there leading young kids, lacking experience, and if we get pumped or whatever it’s no skin off his nose. 

“He can say ‘I’m leading a lot of young guys who were inexperienced’ and over the question of the older guys ‘it was time for a change and it needed to be done now’.

“It’s a win-win situation.”

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But Thompson, now 35 and part of the World Cup squad that made it to the second round in Germany, expects some of the young Socceroos to announce themselves.

“All the best players in the game are at the World Cup but you always find someone special who emerges from the pool games,” he said. 

“I’m hoping some of these young guys in the Socceroos are among that emerging group.

“I want someone just to burst onto the world stage — say ‘here I am’ at the World Cup.

“I think that would be pretty special.”

Thompson said he wouldn’t be measuring the Socceroos’ success on results alone.

“A pass mark against these teams, all three inside the top 20 in the world, is perhaps keeping it under 5-0,” he said.

“But as much as the World Cup is all about results, I’ll be looking for spirit.

“If I can come away from these games and say we played with the Aussie heart, the spirit we see in every code — then I think that’s a pass mark.

“All we can expect is for these guys to go out there and have a go.”

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