Bookmakers Say The Socceroos Are The Jamaican Bobsled Team Of Brazil 2014

This year’s most leaky World Cup underdog is Australia, per everyone.  

The lowly Socceroos will soon take part in a ~titanic struggle of epic proportions~ to successfully emerge from the seventh circle of soccer hell that is the Group Of Death with their pulses intact. With the odds ever against our favour, immediately relegating us to making-up-the-numbers status on the announcement that our formidable Group B foes would include 2010 world cup winners and 2012 european champions, Spain, 2010 world cup runners ups The Netherlands, and rising South American power players, Chile, teams which all currently rank in the top 15 of the FIFA world rankings, sitting at 1st, 15th and 13th respectively, the most appropriate sports-related comparison we could make here is that of the Hollywood-friendly journey of the Jamaican bobsled team which found their way into the 1988 Calgary games, the big screen and the hearts of millions just by trying real hard.

In contrast to our competitors, we currently rank at 59th, per FIFA (just one spot in front of country we didn’t even know existed til just now, Burkina Faso), to cement the dishonour of being the poorest ranked squad of all contending World Cup qualifiers. And the betting odds reflect that. (Relatively generous) domestic bookmakers such as Sportsbet price a tournament win at 500-1, while overseas bookies such as Skybet have us at 1500-1.

But don’t tell Tim Cahill.

He had this to say when we caught up with him earlier this year: “I think for me personally, I want to take in the mentality of ‘no fear…I think for us, we need to do what Australians do best. Wear our hearts on our sleeves. Play aggressive. We’re a very fit team and in the past we’ve had the quality that can definitely unlock teams. I suppose it’s one of those things where we have to go into the tournament with the intent to do well and not to make up the numbers.”
With that being said the inconvenient truth here is that we are the worst ranked squad playing in the toughest group in the tournament. Our chances of prevailing and wining the whole thing are pretty much zero. But then again, stranger things have happened… 

image by Cameron Spencer for Getty Images Sport