Explainer: Socceroos' 2018 World Cup qualifying equation

Australia have made a strong start to their 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifying campaign with two wins and two draws. The World Game looks at what lies ahead for the Socceroos as they strive to earn a ticket to Russia.

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The Socceroos celebrate a goal against Japan. Source: Getty Images

Ange Postecoglou's side have six matches left to play in the Asian Football Confederation's third round of qualifying, starting with a clash against Thailand in Bangkok on November 15.

The Socceroos are currently second in Group B on eight points and trail top placed Saudi Arabia by two points - with the top two sides earning direct qualification for the 2018 World Cup.

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In March, Australia will resume their campaign with matches away to Iraq and at home against United Arab Emirates.

The Socceroos then meet Saudi Arabia in Australia in June, before a trip to Japan in August to take on Samurai Blue.

A home match against Thailand on September 5 will be the final match in the AFC third round.

If Australia finishes third in Group B they will take on the third placed team from Group A in an AFC qualifying playoff clash. 



The winner of that match will then take on the fourth placed side from the Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) for the final ticket to Russia 2018.

This cross-confederation playoff will take place in November 2017 and is played over two legs home and away.

There is still a long way to go for the Socceroos but Postecoglou's side are on the right track to qualify for Australia's fourth straight FIFA World Cup finals.


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2 min read
Published 12 October 2016 at 2:03pm
Source: SBS