Australia coach Ange Postecoglou is hoping he has found the solution to his side’s attacking woes after calling up Greece-born striker Apostolos Giannou for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers.
The reigning champions of Asia have struggled to find a consistent presence up front in recent times, with only Tim Cahill and Tomi Juric featuring regularly.
However, Postecoglou managed to convince Giannou to put on the green and gold jersey of Australia, despite the 26-year-old having played in an international friendly for Greece.
And Postecoglou is hoping Giannou brings the added depth desperately needed in one of the weakest links in the side.
“I haven’t hidden the fact that in the full-back positions I still haven’t been satisfied in the depth and the quality we have had from there, and the central striking position,” the 50-year-old said.
“Apart from Timmy, who has been really consistent for us, Tomi Juric, when he hasn’t been injured, we have kind have been light on there.
“That’s the reason we have Apo [Giannou] in here and why we tracked Jamie Maclaren so closely.
“We have got really good depth now in the midfield areas, both defensively and offensively.
“But even as I say that I am tracking everybody, even in the areas we are strong, if somebody shows good enough form I will have a look at them.”
Postecoglou admitted Giannou may show signs of nervousness, but backed the Guangzhou R&F forward to perform against Tajikistan and Jordan.
“It’s a good opportunity for him,” Postecoglou said. “I don’t want to put too much pressure on him, he’s scored goals at a high level and he’s already had some international experience, there’s no doubt he’ll be nervous in these couple of games.
“But I know enough of him and have seen enough of him to see that he can be an asset for us. He’s a quiet lad anyway.
“Even though he’s a bit more mature, it’s still his first time so it’s going to take him a while to come out of his shell. In a footballing sense I think he’ll fit in well.”