Verbeek unhappy with showing
Australia manager Pim Verbeek blasted his players for a lacklustre showing against New Zealand.
By Mike Barton
Last Updated: 24/05/10 5:42pm
Australia manager Pim Verbeek blasted his players for a lacklustre showing against New Zealand in their 2-1 victory on Monday.
The Socceroos were expected to deliver a good performance in their pre-World Cup friendly against their Kiwi neighbours, but often found themselves on the back foot, with substitute Brett Holman striking in injury time to spare the home side's blushes.
Verbeek was unable to field some of his stars including the likes of Harry Kewell, Mark Schwarzer and Brett Emerton, but was still unhappy with the performance of his team, stating that the All Whites deserved something from the game, but they still had time to improve.
"If we played the World Cup in three or four days, I should get worried, but we still have three weeks so we're still on track," said Verbeek.
"I don't think (we deserved the win). 1-1 was more than enough, I think."
The Dutch coach was also furious with some of the physical tackling from his players, blasting senior members Tim Cahill and Vince Grella for two bad challenges on New Zealand's Leo Bertos.
Bertos had to come off for the second half injured, with Verbeek reacting by taking both of his midfielders off as well as the ineffective Mark Bresciano.
Grella's challenge was appalling and should have been punished with a straight red card, something Verbeek was eager to point out and called on the Blackburn man to learn from.
"I think in the World Cup that's probably two red cards, so it's a good lesson," Verbeek added.
"I cannot accept this; the players know it, you cannot afford to go into whatever game and make tackles like that."