We want to be like Chile

Australia kick off their World Cup on Friday against Chile, tournament dark horses that new coach Ange Postecoglou actually wants to emulate in his reinvention of the Socceroo squad.

Postecoglou said the Australians can handle the minimal expectations the soccer world has for his team, the lowest ranked at the World Cup in Brazil. But the Socceroos can also get a glimpse on Friday of what the future may hold.

"I don't want to keep coming to World Cups and have people saying 'you've got no chance'," Postecoglou said at a news conference on Thursday at the match venue Pantanal arena in the western city of Cuiaba.

"I'd rather they talk about us like they are talking about Chile now. I think they are a good example of a country that has worked for the last four or five years to become a force, and that's our goal."

Postecoglou, 48, took over in October with a five-year contract and got stuck in the December draw with the impossibly difficult Group B, along with defending champions Spain, 2010 runners up Netherlands and the South American team that some rate a surprise contender for the 2014 Cup.

"I feel like they can have a real impact in this tournament," Postecoglou said of Chile. "They are an exceptionally strong unit."

Australia captain Mile Jedinak chimed in, saying: "I think the boss summed it up. It's going to be a very tough opposition. They are in great form."

Earlier in the day, Chile coach Jorge Sampaoli had lavished praise on Postecoglou for wanting to "play in another way, which means a great evolution for Australian football."

Postecoglou has a reputation for rebuilding teams and getting them to play in an adventurous, attacking style. He likes to play a 4-3-3 formation.

In his transition away from Australia's "Golden Generation," the core of players that swept the nation into the two previous World Cups, Greece-born Postecoglou has brought up younger players from his days coaching domestic teams.

Yet, he was asked about the team's continuing reliance on veteran striker Tim Cahill, who many consider the only player in the Socceroos camp that might be termed 'world class'.

"I'm not worried," said Postecoglou. "At least we've got someone there is who is very threatening. I don't think that's our only avenue. We certainly believe we can be a threat in other areas."

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