Veteran Fiji coach Billy Singh expressed disappointment at the lack of commitment shown by his players as they were put to the sword by an efficient Australian team at Ericsson Stadium on Wednesday night.
The Socceroos inflicted one of the heaviest defeats Fiji has suffered scoring eight unanswered goals; young Joel Porter scoring four goals. With that victory, Australia easily takes out Group A honours and now advances to Fridays semi-final against Group B runner up Tahiti.
Singh indicated he may call it a day after a successful fifteen year reign, but told reporters at the after match press conference that the right candidate must be found first. Reports link former Australian coach Les Scheinflug to the job but that has yet to be confirmed.
However, Singh was searching for answers to his teams lacklustre performance. He said the players were provided incentives to win. He described the current team as better than the one that pushed the Socceroos close at last years World Cup Qualifiers, but the difference was last years team showed more commitment.
Singh admitted it had been hard to motivate the team after their loss to Vanuatu and especially after Vanuatu beat New Caledonia in the early match. That meant Fiji could not settle for a draw but had to win.
Captain Esala Masi was also disappointed with the teams performance and hinted a changing of the guard was on the cards if Fiji was to regain its status as the top island nation.
Frank Farina said the team was a different side to the one he faced last year and indicated that Singhs troops may have been deflated mentally after the loss to Vanuatu a few days earlier.
Again, he expressed satisfaction with the commitment of his players. The Socceroos have certainly ironed out any deficiencies exposed by Vanuatu in their first match and are going from strength to strength. On attack they are as clinical as a surgeons knife and on defence their goal has rarely been threatened.
On scoring four goals, Joel Porter said he was ecstatic with his performance and remarked it is a honour to be here.
5 min # 15 Ante Milicic (Aus)
8 min # 8 Joel Porter (Aus)
13 min # 8 Joel Porter (Aus)
36 min - # 17 Ante Juric (Aus)
44 min - # 8 Joel Porter (Aus)
47 min - # 16 Paul Trimboli (Aus)
53 min - # 8 Joel Porter (Aus)
89 min - # 2 Fausto De Amicis (Aus)
45 min - # 4 Mehmed Durakovic for # 5 Steve Horvat
52 min - # 13 Milan Blagojevic for # 14 Angelo Costanzo
59 min - # 7 Robert Middleby for # 11 Scott Chipperfield
20 min - # 20 Luke Tavuyara for # 1 Laisenia Tuba
59 min - # 12 Esala Masi for # 9 Junior Bukalidi
68 min - # 8 Emosi Baleinuku for # 17 Malakai Kainihewe
12 min - # 18 Veresa Toma (Fiji)
Australia: 1. Jason Petkovic 2. Fausto De Amicis 5. Steve Horvat 6. Patrick Kisnorbo 8. Joel Porter 11. Scott Chipperfield 12. Tom Pondeljak 14. Angelo Costanzo 15. Ante Milicic 16. Paul Trimboli 17. Ante Juric
BENCH: 3. Jade North 4. Mehmed Durakovic 7. Robert Middleby 9. Damian Mori 10. Bobby Depotovski 13. Milan Blagojevic 18. Dean Anastasiadis