Graham Arnold hits a French star who doesn’t know Socceroos with a hilarious World Cup comeback

Graham Arnold hits a French star who doesn’t know Socceroos with a hilarious World Cup comeback

Australian coach Graham Arnold has used a signature one-liner to hilariously hit back at a French star who claimed he had never heard of a single Socceroos player.

The Socceroos have had almost no chance to upset reigning champions France in their Cup opener on Wednesday morning (6am AEDT), playing against a side many believe to be the weakest Aussie side sent to a World Cup.

Australian coach Graham Arnold (pictured) has hilariously hit back at a French star who claimed he had never heard of a single Socceroos player

Australian coach Graham Arnold (pictured) has hilariously hit back at a French star who claimed he had never heard of a single Socceroos player

On Sunday, French defender Ibrahima Konate (pictured) and midfielder Eduardo Camavinga admitted they couldn't identify anyone from the Australian side - even though they both faced Socceroos players at club level.

On Sunday, French defender Ibrahima Konate (pictured) and midfielder Eduardo Camavinga admitted they couldn’t identify anyone from the Australian side – even though they both faced Socceroos players at club level.

On Sunday, French defender Ibrahima Konate and midfielder Eduardo Camavinga admitted they could not identify anyone in the team they will be playing – even though they were both up against members at club level.

Graham Arnold was asked about Konate’s comments at a press conference Monday and his response was sharp.

“Doesn’t he have Paramount+?” asked Arnold, referring to the streaming service that broadcasts A-League football.

The dry response elicited much laughter, but Arnold was quick to point out that while his team aren’t big names, they do have huge hearts.

Arnold believes the Socceroos' greatest asset (pictured) is their mentality

Arnold believes the Socceroos’ greatest asset (pictured) is their mentality

“I know their mentality, that’s the most important thing,” Arnold said of his players.

“They don’t back down from anyone, they only know to look ahead and move forward, no matter who’s in front of them.

And it’s not disrespectful at all, but I barely mentioned the word ‘France’ and I barely mentioned the names of the (French) players.

“The players know who they are… it’s 10 blue shirts against 10 yellow shirts and it’s a fight.”

It’s a fight that most think the Australians can’t win.

Arnold lost damaging winger Martin Boyle to injury before the tournament started.

His attacking pivot in midfield, Ajdin Hrustic, is not fit enough to start against the French.

Most Australians believe that the current Socceroos squad cannot beat the French

Most Australians believe that the current Socceroos squad cannot beat the French

Captain and goalkeeper Mat Ryan has struggled to get consistent club playing time for two years and especially recently.

Ditto for defenders Harry Souttar, Kye Rowles and Nathaniel Atkinson who are all returning from a recent injury.

Arnold has a strike force of A-League frontmen Jamie Maclaren and Jason Cummings, and Mitchell Duke, from Japan’s second tier.

Many French players, among the richest in talent and wealth across the world’s biggest clubs, have honestly answered questions about the Socceroos: they don’t know who they are.

“It’s something that’s their point of view,” Arnold said.

Our job is to go out tomorrow and show them who we are as a nation.

French players like Ibrahima Konate (pictured) - who are among the richest and most talented football players - are candid about their knowledge of the Socceroos: they have no idea who they are

French players like Ibrahima Konate (pictured) – who are among the richest and most talented football players – are candid about their knowledge of the Socceroos: they have no idea who they are

“The players have the stage, it’s their stage.

“And this is an opportunity that could change their lives.”

So how can the Socceroos shock the world with a win at Al Janoub Stadium?

Have faith first.

“It’s about believing in yourself,” Arnold said.

Second, do absolutely everything right.

“Not just one aspect of the game, whether it’s defense or offense,” said Arnold.

“The opponent is dangerous when they don’t have the ball because of the way they transition with the counterattack.

Arnold believes the Socceroos can win - they just have to get everything right

Arnold believes the Socceroos can win – they just have to get everything right

“So we really have to make sure that every aspect – in defence, half-time defence, build-up, attack – we have to be in our game.

“And we will be.”

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