Australia captain Lucas Neill is viewing Tuesday's clash with in-form Japan as a chance not only to boost their 2010 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ qualifying campaign, but also to heal the wounds of last year's painful AFC Asian Cup final defeat.

The Samurai Blue won that game 1-0 following an extra-time goal from Tadanari Lee, and the Socceroos defender admits a victory in Brisbane tomorrow would go some way to erasing the memory of that loss in Doha.

"That match is probably a nice memory for Japan and a bad memory for us," said Neill. "We lost to perhaps one lapse in concentration.

"It's situations like that which give us the motivation and desire to put things right. Beating Japan would be a great way to heal us."

When you win, you play with confidence, so Japan are the form team. But by no means do we see that as a bad thing - we like the underdog tag.

Lucas Neill

Neill knows it will not be easy at Suncorp Stadium, though, with Japan sitting top of their qualifying group with two wins from two, having beaten Oman 3-0 and Jordan 6-0. Australia, meanwhile, drew their opening Group B match against Oman 0-0 in Muscat on Saturday, so they will go into the game trailing their opponents by five points.

"This game is very important for us because we are at home - we need to get maximum points," said Neill. "But I actually think Japan are favourites for this game - they've had a better preparation.

"When you win, you play with confidence, so Japan are the form team. But by no means do we see that as a bad thing - we like the underdog tag."

"The first goal is going to be very important. It is vital that we limit our opposition, and then make them feel the pressure in front of goal to give ourselves the best chance of scoring."

Tuesday's other Group B match sees Iraq face Oman in Doha, with both teams having picked up one point apiece so far. Iraq drew 1-1 away to Jordan earlier this month, while Oman bounced back from their loss to Japan with that draw with the Australians.