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Socceroos aim for quick Thailand shutdown

AAP logoAAP 14/11/2016 Emma Kemp

The Socceroos will aim to run Thailand ragged before they even get a sniff of goal in their crunch World Cup qualifier.

Tuesday looms as a crucial night in Group B and will determine where Australia sit in the pecking order at the halfway point of the final phase.

The Socceroos are second on eight points but need to beat winless Thailand to keep the pressure on leaders Saudi Arabia (10 points) and third-placed Japan (seven points).

Should they triumph in Bangkok, Ange Postecoglou's men will enter next year's fixtures in a strong position to make Russia 2018 as one of the top-two teams.

But Postecoglou will also have one eye on Tuesday's other match between Saudi Arabia and Japan.

Australia can reclaim top spot if both they and Japan win.

But should Australian and Japan lose, Saudi Arabia will close out the year five points clear.

After a rare 10-day training camp in Bangkok the national team have no excuse for a poor performance against a Thai side yet to register a point in qualifying.

Yet captain Mile Jedinak expected them to be as "tricky" a proposition for the Socceroos as they have been in past encounters.

Jedinak implored his team to learn from slow starts in their last two clashes with Japan and Saudi Arabia and put Thailand away early before they can get into the contest.

"At any level, but particularly at this World Cup qualification in this region, it's about trying to stay in games," Jedinak said.

"The longer you can stay in games and keep it close, everyone's a chance of getting a goal and holding onto that lead.

"We like to take it to the opposition at the beginning.

"Whether they have the discipline to cope remains to be seen.

"That will be the test, not only to maintain that, but are they able to hold out?

"It'd be nice to get an early goal ... if we don't it's about applying the pressure then more than likely the goal will come."

The other question is whether Thailand take the same approach as Japan in Melbourne last month and sit back, attempt to absorb pressure and hit on the counter via dangerous playmaker Chanathip Songkrasin.

On the other hand, they could opt to attack with nothing to lose at home, as they ride on emotion following the death of their king and longest-reigning monarch.

As a sign of respect, both teams will wear black armbands at the Rajamangala National Stadium.

Thailand coach Kiatisuk Senamuang has overlooked defender Tana Chanabut, who scored the country's only goal so far in last month's 3-1 loss to United Arab Emirates.

He declared the squad would fight to the death but said "it doesn't matter whether we win or lose" despite the country's football association offering a 10 million baht ($A400,000) bonus for a victory.

"The important thing is that everyone should play to their potential and stick to the game plan," Kiatisuk said.

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