Cahill sits out Socceroos training
Everton's Tim Cahill again sat out training on Thursday, as his Australian teammates said it was high time they got the better of holders Iraq ahead of the teams' AFC Asian Cup clash.
Cahill has been struggling with a thigh injury and team officials were tight-lipped about his prospects of making Saturday's quarter-final showdown. Iraq pulled off a shock 3-1 win over the Socceroos in 2007 in the group stages, a victory which set them on the way to continental glory.
"I don't think revenge is the word," said midfielder Brett Holman. "But it would be nice to get a win as they've won the last couple of games against us and had the upper hand."
Fellow midfielder Mile Jedinak has been a major player so far for Australia, scoring twice in the group stages including the winner in the 1-0 victory over Bahrain that ensured they topped their group.
Asked if it was a revenge mission against the champions, Jedinak said: "Personally, not being there last time, I'm not thinking about that, though I'm not sure about the rest of the boys and this is a different game."
The 26-year-old warned his side: "Let's not kid ourselves - they are the defending champions for a reason. They are a good side and we are expecting a tough game."
Jedinak, who plays in Turkey, said he had seen some of the Iraq games, including the 1-0 victory over Korea DPR on Wednesday that guaranteed them a last eight spot against the Socceroos. "I thought they were pretty impressive," he said. "In saying that, I feel very confident."