Football 1 year ago

Ange glad Aussie pitches are on the agenda

  • Ange glad Aussie pitches are on the agenda

    SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 01: Ange Postecoglou head coach of the Socceroos watches on during an Australian Socceroos training session at Leichhardt Oval on June 1, 2016 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Jason McCawley/Getty Images)

He's put it firmly on the agenda, now Socceroos coach Ange Postecoglou will let others continue the conversation about the state of Australia's pitches.

Postecoglou was irate after Saturday night's 1-0 win over Greece in Sydney, declaring the state of ANZ Stadium's surface a disgrace and voicing his "embarrassment" at hosting the European visitors on it.

It prompted the players' union to call for the government to improve "sub-standard" surfaces.

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ANZ Stadium's open-air venue was done no favours by a wild weekend of weather in NSW's capital, nor the State of Origin opener three days prior.

Both teams will benefit from a roof at Etihad Stadium when they meet again in Melbourne on Tuesday night, though two AFL matches were played there over the weekend.

"We haven't seen the pitch yet, we'll go out there tonight but the reports I've got is it's not in bad nick," Postecoglou said before Monday's familiarisation session.

"It obviously had a bit of traffic over the weekend, but with the roof that obviously helps."

Postecoglou has long called for better pitches in Australia, where the Socceroos do not have a designated home ground and tour the country as a result.

And with crucial World Cup qualifiers around the corner, the coach said he decided now was an important time to make a stand.

"It's obviously imperative for what we want to do and achieve and I'm pleased to see I'm not the lone voice," Postecoglou said.

"People are starting to talk about it and throwing out different ideas.

"Whether that's a national stadium or just football-specific stadiums, it's good to get it on the agenda.

"I've been talking about it for a little while and thought Saturday night was a good time to make a statement.

"Now it's on the agenda, and that's where it deserves to be.

"I'll let other people pick up the conversation from now and let us focus on the football."

Postecoglou has foreshadowed changes from Saturday's line-up, with Tim Cahill to wear the captain's armband in Mile Jedinak's absence and some of the squad's youngsters to get more game time before the last phase of World Cup qualifiers start in September.

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