There is always the talk of dream matches and chances for Australia to host an international friendly against some of the world’s biggest nations.

The next round of World Cup qualifiers opens the door for the occasional exhibition match which the Socceroos could host on home soil – which have been a big hit among the footballing public from a crowd and commercial stand-point.

Here are some of the fantasy matchups for the Socceroos.

Italy

Who could forget the 2006 FIFA World Cup clash in Kaiserslautern?

The infamous last-minute penalty to sink the Socceroos’ dream run in Germany ended Australia’s best chance to go deep on the world’s biggest stage thus far. Instead, Francesco Totti’s spot-kick was part of the journey which sent Italy to their fourth World Cup crown and the Australian football faithful has awaited eagerly for a rematch against the Azzurri. Since then, there has been no rematch and a big crowd would almost be a guarantee due to the history and the large Italian fanbase down-under.

A sell-out at the MCG could be on the cards in what would be a hotly anticipated clash between two sides who have very rarely locked horns.

Greece

The Socceroos vs Greece clashes have become almost a staple of international friendlies down-under.

The two have met three times since 2006, with the first being in front of 95,000 people at the MCG before the World Cup in Germany. Even though this has been a fixture more predominant in comparison to other international opponents – a match against the Greeks is almost guaranteed to draw a large crowd due to the raucous Greek-Australian community.

A clash in Melbourne once again would be a nice test for the Socceroos who are arguably on a similar level in terms of quality on the field.

Croatia

A big Croatian community and a storied history between the two nations sets up a huge contest which has never happened on Australian soil.

There are almost 40,000 born Croatian’s living in Australia and numerous generations coming through of proud supporters who in particular got behind their side in the previous World Cup. The foundations of Australian football in this country and some of the biggest sides in the old NSL were born with Croatian roots such as Melbourne Knights and Sydney United. However, on the field, the infamous clash in the 2006 World Cup which saw the Socceroos advance at the expense of Croatia lives long in the folklore of both teams international footballing history.

A rematch back in 2014 saw the Vatreni come away with a 1-0 win, but a match in Australia has never occurred and is one which certainly has the potential to be a major drawcard.

England

The Ashes, do I need to say anymore?

In the history of Australian football, it has been a very long time since the Three Lions touched down to take on the Socceroos. In fact, the last two times they met were both on English soil with one of them being the famous 3-1 win back in 2003 where the Socceroos humbled a full-strength England line-up. Their most recent affair ended in a 2-1 win to the English back in 2015 but a match in Australia would be sure to create a sense of bragging rights which have lived long in the histories of both Australian and English sport.

The game could be played anywhere around the country and a full-house would almost be a guarantee.

Uruguay

The two sides have been at each-other’s heads for years and a rematch is all but due.

After the enthralling two sets of playoffs back in 2001 and 2005, the Socceroos and Uruguay have barely met since the night John Aloisi sent Australia to their first World Cup in 32 years. The single friendly back in 2007 has been the only meeting and a chance for the two sides to lock horns again would be an almost guaranteed draw for fans due to their personal brooding history of the early 2000’s.

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Nick D’Urbano
nicholas.durbano9@gmail.com