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The hole that Cahill leaves in Australian football

Australia
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Hakeem al-Araibi, freed from Thai prison, returns to Pascoe Vale: 'It's a very special moment'

Al-Araibi's return to Pascoe Vale was met with a rich and warm reception. It's expected he'll be fit enough to be back in the team within a few weeks.

MELBOURNE, Australia -- Drums, dancers and a dizzying amount of cameras greeted Hakeem al-Araibi on Friday night as the Bahraini refugee watched his semi-professional football club for the first time since his Thai extradition ordeal ended last week.

The large crowd, many wearing #HakeemSaved shirts, traveled from around the country to Pascoe Vale, in Melbourne's north, to celebrate with a footballer they had campaigned to have released from a Thai prison for more than two months.

"The celebrations...

Socceroos and Matildas rudderless as FFA's search for national technical director goes on

Search for a recently vacant position on the Football Federation Australia website, and you will come across a 404 message.

As far as visual metaphors go, an error message relating to destination on the governing body's official website is almost perfect, even by Australian football's standards.

Yet, the page for that recently vacant position was not the one filled by Ante Milicic with the the Matildas this week. Rather it's that of the national technical director, one of the most important football...

Should A-League shoulder the blame for Australia's Asian Cup failure? Ola Toivonen strikes again

Can issues with Australia's national team be attributed to a lack of opportunities in the A-League? Rob Brooks puts this question to the test after a wild week in Australian football.

Talking point of the weekend

A quite extraordinary and depressing seven days in Australian football, which kicked off with the sacking of Australia women's national team coach Alen Stajcic -- for reasons yet to be fully revealed -- and included the Socceroos' departure from the Asian Cup at the quarter-final stage,...

Australia's Asian Cup exit down to Graham Arnold's reluctance to change tactics

It was almost, while recognising how much of a meme the word has become in Australian football: expected.

There was a pervasive sense of inevitability in Australia's 1-0 loss to the United Arab Emirates on Friday, knocking them out of the Asian Cup. Absent was the fabled "Science of Belief," but in its place stood logic. Ten minutes of injury time could have been 30, and the Socceroos still would have struggled to find an equaliser.

When the agony of defeat is felt in a major international tournament,...

Milos Degenek a 5/10 after howler leads to Australia's elimination from Asian Cup

Ismaeil Matar Aljneibi of United Arab Emirates battles for possession with Milos Degenek of Australia during the AFC Asian Cup quarter final match between United Arab Emirates and Australia.
Milos Degenek's woeful back-pass led to the UAE's winner over Australia.

Reigning champions Australia waited until the quarterfinal of the 2019 Asian Cup to play some of their best football, only to be ousted by UAE in a 1-0 defeat. Despite easily dominating possession and shots on goal, a howler from defender Milos Degenek paved the way for the host nation to progress to the final four, where they will meet Qatar, who upset South Korea earlier on Friday evening.

Positives

Ironically, this was one of Australia's best overall performances of the tournament, as the...

Why Robbie Kruse could be Australia's saviour, not scapegoat

"Sometimes it's not so much having the technique," Robbie Kruse said following Australia's victory over Uzbekistan in the Asian Cup round of 16 on Monday.

"It's more so about having the balls to do it, having the confidence to do it."

The topic in the mixed zone was his own penalty in the dramatic shootout win for the Socceroos, but zooming out, Kruse could just as well have been talking about his own game.

Or his true impact on the team. Or the wider Australian football public's misinterpretation...