Socceroos’ key dates to look forward to in 2022

From battling to book a place at the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ to the 100th anniversary of our first Men’s National Team match, there is plenty to get excited about in 2022.

Socceroos fans, here is a rundown of the key dates to put in your calendar for the next 12 months.

Remaining Round 3 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers

January 27: Socceroos v Vietnam (8:10pm AEDT – Melbourne, Australia)

February 1: Socceroos v Oman (3am February 2 AEDT – Muscat, Oman)

March 24: Socceroos v Japan (TBC, Australia)

March 29: Socceroos v Saudia Arabia (TBC, Saudi Arabia)

The Road to Qatar will recommence on January 27 when the Socceroos host Vietnam in a crucial clash at the Melbourne Rectangular Stadium.

With a capacity crowd set to converge on the Melbourne Park precinct and every point proving crucial, the Socceroos will be ready to put on a show.

Vietnam Melbourne Banner 1

Just days later, the Socceroos travel to Muscat to face Oman in yet another vital qualifier.

Then, it all might come down to two massive matchups in late March as Australia face Japan at home, before closing out Group B against group leaders Saudi Arabia.

While the Green and Gold are currently third in Group B, qualification for a fifth consecutive World Cup is still in their hands.

To qualify directly, Australia must finish either first or second in Group B while a third-place finish would send the Socceroos to a play-off against the third-place team from Group A, followed by an intercontinental play-off.

Potential FIFA World Cup Qualification play-offs

June 2022: Asian Playoffs

June 13/14, 2022: Single-Leg Intercontinental Playoffs

Only the top two teams in each AFC third-round group automatically qualify for the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

Should the Socceroos finish third, Australia would have to navigate the play-off stage in order to qualify for Qatar.

Ladder after 6 games
The Socceroos currently sit third in Group B.

The play-offs consist of a tie against the third-place team from Group A, followed by a single-leg intercontinental play-off on neutral territory against the fifth-best side in South American qualifying.

The Socceroos took this path to Russia 2018, navigating home-and-away ties with Syria and Honduras.

100th anniversary of Australia’s first ‘A’ international

June 17, 2022 marks the 100th anniversary of the Socceroos’ first ever match – although they were not known as the ‘Socceroos’ at the time.

The history of the Australian Men’s National Football team dates all the way back to 1922, when a tour invitation from New Zealand Football was accepted by the Commonwealth Football Association.

Players from NSW and Queensland were chosen for the tour which consisted of fourteen games, including three Tests. The first of those took place in Dunedin on 17 June, in which New Zealand were victorious 3-1, with William Maunder scoring the only goal for Australia.

Australia played in a light-blue strip with maroon hoops on the socks, incorporating the colours of both NSW and Queensland. They wore those colours until 1924 when Green & Gold were incorporated into the kit.

Stay tuned throughout 2022, as Football Australia celebrates the team’s long history during its centenary year.

The first Australian National Men's Football Team, Dunedin NZ June 1922
The first Australian National Men’s Football Team, Dunedin NZ June 1922

FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™

Should the Socceroos qualify for the World Cup in Qatar, they will compete at their fifth consecutive World Cup Finals.

Until 2010, Australia had only ever qualified for two World Cups, both of which were held on German soil, in 1974 and 2006.

While those two tournaments represent the high watermark of the achievements of the national side, the multiple attempts to qualify for the biggest single-sport event in the world have characterised the Socceroos’ history.

Qatar 22 official logo
Australia is hoping to make a fifth consecutive FIFA World Cup at Qatar 2022.

The 2022 World Cup is scheduled to take place November 21 to December 18 and is unique for a few reasons. At just 28 days long, this World Cup will be the shortest tournament since the 1978 edition. The tournament also takes place in the Middle East for the first time.

13 countries have already secured their spot in Qatar, with teams around the world battling it out to secure the remaining spots and Australia will be desperate to add their name to the list.

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