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|Japan are clear favourites - Australia captain Lucas Neill|
Socceroos skipper Lucas Neill has insisted that his side will go into their 2014 World Cup qualifier against Japan in Brisbane tonight as underdogs.
After playing out a scoreless draw away to Oman in Muscat on Friday evening Australian time, the Socceroos sit on one point in their group, while Japan have 6 to their name, after having won their first two encounters at home to Oman and Jordan.
The Blue Samurai have impressed scoring three goals and then six goals against Oman and Jordan respectively without conceding.
New Manchester United signing Shinju Kagawa and Keisuke Honda have fired for Alberto Zaccheroni’s men, giving them real hope of taking away at least a point from Australia in this clash of Asia's titans.
"The game is important because we are at home, the game is important because we need to get maximum points from every game we play," Neill said.
"I think Japan is the favourite for this game. With their preparation, they have had two home games, they came here with confidence, they came here earlier than we did to play on our home turf.
"We know we're in for a very tough game ... but it's one we believe we can win."
Australia coach Holger Osieck concurred with his captain, claiming that the Japanese will be inspired by their first two games.
"When you win two games you are full of confidence, and you are riding on a high," he said.
"(But) we are not here to give any presents, although they are top we will still be looking to get a result."
Australia and Japan’s football rivalry stems back to the fateful day in Kaiserslautern when the Socceroos came back to defeat Japan in the 2006 World Cup, with the two Asian powerhouses coming up against each other today on the sixth anniversary of that match.
The two then locked horns in Hanoi in 2007 at the Asian Cup, which the Japanese won on penalties, before the Blue Samurai went on to edge Australia out in the 2011 Asian Cup final.
Neill admitted that the most recent loss would spur his team on tonight.
"It was a very nice memory for the Japanese, a very bad memory for us," he added.
"It was a great final, we lost perhaps because of one lapse in concentration.
"It's a situation like that, that gives us motivation, the desire to put things right.
"Beating Japan would be a great way to heal (from that defeat), but the most important thing is to qualify for the World Cup, whether we are first or second."
Kick off tonight at Suncorp Stadium is at 20:00 local time.