Australia vs Bangladesh Match Analysis & Prediction
16/11/2023 12:00 pm
Australia will kick off their 2026 World Cup qualifying campaign when the welcome Bangladesh to Melbourne for Thursday’s contest.
The visitors have already come through one stage of qualifying after claiming a narrow victory over the Maldives in the first-round playoffs.
After going 32 years without a World Cup finals appearance between 1974 and 2006, Australia have made a habit of qualifying for football’s showpiece event.
Impressively, they have appeared in each of the last five finals, including the 2022 World Cup in Qatar where they managed to reach the knockout rounds for just the second time.
As the third-highest ranked team in the Asia section of qualifying, Australia will be expected to top a group that features Palestine, Lebanon and Bangladesh.
Should they finish in the top two of Group I, the Socceroos will progress to the third and final stage of qualifying, while they will also be guaranteed a spot at the 2027 Asia Cup.
Graham Arnold’s side have the chance to claim successive victories on Thursday after they ended a four-game winless run with a 2-0 win over New Zealand in their most recent international in October.
Meanwhile, Bangladesh claimed a 3-2 aggregate victory over the Maldives to secure their spot in the second round of qualifying.
Saad Uddin scored a stoppage-time equaliser to ensure the away leg finished as a 1-1 draw, before goals from Rakib Hossain and Foysal Ahmed Fahim guided Javier Cabrera’s side to a 2-1 victory in the return leg.
Bangladesh have at least proven a tough team to beat in recent times, having avoided defeat in regulation time in each of their last seven matches.
However, they have lost 11 of their last 15 away matches in World Cup qualifying, highlighting the amount of task that awaits them on Thursday.
Australia vs. Bangladesh Head to head
Australia have won each of the two previous matches between these two teams, scoring nine goals without conceding.
03/09/2015Australia5Bangladesh0AFC World Cup Qualifiers
17/11/2015Bangladesh0Australia4AFC World Cup Qualifiers
16/11/2023AustraliaN/ABangladeshN/AAFC World Cup Qualifiers
Australia Team News
Australia could line up with a centre-back pairing of Harry Souttar and Cameron Burgess, while Ryan Strain and Jordan Bos could operate as the two full-backs.
Machida Zelvia striker Mitchell Duke has scored in his last two J2 League matches, as he will look to find the back of the net for a third successive game when he leads the line for the hosts.
Australia's Last 5 Matches
Bangladesh Team News
Bangladesh midfielder Sohel Rana is set to serve a one-game suspension after he was sent off in the second-leg victory over the Maldives.
Teenage goalkeeper Mitul Marma will be the last line of defence, but the shot-stopper will be looking for assistance from his backline, which could feature Uddin, Tariq Kazi, Bishwanath Ghosh and Shakil Hossain.
Bangladesh's Last 5 Matches
12/10/2023Maldives1Bangladesh1AFC World Cup Qualifiers
17/10/2023Bangladesh2Maldives1AFC World Cup Qualifiers
Australia vs. Bangladesh: Odds and Predictions
Handicap Australia (-4.5): Yes
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