After falling behind to an early hammer blow at ANZ Stadium, Ange Postecoglou’s side recovered to beat Syria 2-1 by the skin of their teeth in extra-time and book a place in a final qualifying playoff. The bad news for followers of Australian football is that, inevitably, another gut-wrenching 180 minutes of tension awaits.
Tim Cahill, restored to the starting lineup having been left on the bench for last week’s first leg in Malaysia, sparked the revival early in the first half of regulation time and then sealed the win deep in extra-time, both with trademark headers. The second, in the 109th minute of play, was the talismanic forward’s 50th for his country. You could say it was one of the more important goals of his international career.
Watch highlights and goal moments below: