Australia have romped into the third and final stage of World Cup qualifying with a punishing 5-1 victory over Jordan in Sydney on Tuesday night, avenging defeat to Al-Nashama earlier in the campaign.
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Five-star Socceroos thump Jordan
Socceroos secure passage to the final stage of World Cup qualifying with an emphatic 5-1 win over Jordan.
On that occasion, Jordan shocked Australia to win 2-0, temporarily threatening the Socceroos' chances of automatically qualifying for the final stage. However, Australia have won every qualifier since, scoring 19 goals and only conceding once.
Not even the presence of English football icon Harry Redknapp in the dugout could inspire Jordan, who now face a nervous wait to see whether they are placed among four second-placed teams from the eight qualifying groups.
All five of the teams below them - North Korea, Iraq, China, Oman, Kuwait - are within three points with a game in hand and Jordan's campaign is now in huge trouble.
But that won't worry Socceroos coach Ange Postecoglou who saw his team execute a clinic of collective excellence, delighting the 24,975 who braved the wet conditions at Allianz Stadium.
Several Australian players performed superbly with Tim Cahill scoring twice in the first half, and Aaron Mooy, Tom Rogic and Massimo Luongo putting an exclamation mark on the display.
Two assists for Robbie Kruse, in his first game since the Asian Cup, were nearly overshadowed by a shocking late tackle from Yousef Al-Rawashdeh.
Cahill even squandered an incredible opportunity to grab a hat-trick with four minutes to play, side-footing his effort directly at the goalkeeper. While it mattered not, Abdallah Deeb's stunning late goal did salvage a sliver of pride for the visitors.
Jordan were at their best when Baha' Abdel-Rahman and Raja'i Ayed were allowed to get time and space on the ball, but after a staunch opening 20 minutes they were overwhelmed.
When the Socceroos did get through, they always looked dangerous. Mooy's 12th-minute cross was headed over by Mathew Leckie from close range, before Rogic tested goalkeeper Amer Shafi with a sizzling, low drive.
And while Jordan tried to take the sting out of the game the opener was scored, inevitably, by Cahill.
Going forward with his usual intent, Mooy sized up the opportunity before spying Kruse racing down the right. The Bayer Leverkusen forward crossed a low pass that should have been intercepted but Cahill simply had to arrange his toes in the right direction.
That rattled the visitors and Redknapp must have sensed what was coming when he saw his players arguing with each other as the ball was returned to half-way.
Jordan briefly tried to muster some resistance but lone forward Hamza Al-Dardour was coming too deep to collect the ball. When he did get it, he was given hardly any support. The counter-attacking game that served them so well in Amman was rendered almost useless.
As the half ticked away, Cahill found Kruse in the clear and he had the presence of mind to spot Mooy on the loose. Showing the composure he's displayed all season with Melbourne City, he tucked away Australia's second.
The same names were at it again for the third goal, with Kruse providing for Cahill. A well-flighted cross was judged superbly by the Hangzhou forward, timing his leap better than that of the goalkeeper and sealing the result inside 45 minutes.
That's goal number 47 and his mission to reach 50 is alive and well. Who knows if he'll get to Russia, but he'll certainly get to the half-century.
Redknapp must have tried to inspire his side at the break but the rout continued in a similarly dominant fashion.
The ever-elegant Rogic made it 4-0 with a typically brilliant piece of skill and with luck, he could have had a double or more. In the 70th minute, two substitutes - Chris Ikonomidis and Massimo Luongo - combined to push Australia even further ahead.
Ikonomidis, currently on loan at Salernitana from Lazio, showed composure beyond his years to slice a pass through Jordan's porous defence, allowing Luongo to spank the ball into the empty net and send Australia a step closer to Russia.