Westfield Matildas expecting tough Thailand test: Stajcic

Westfield Matildas boss Alen Stajcic insists his side won’t be underestimating Thailand in Monday night’s friendly clash at Perth’s nib Stadium.

Australia, ranked sixth in the FIFA World Rankings, host their AFC counterparts in a final hit-out before heading to Jordan for next month’s Asian Cup.

And despite Thailand sitting well below Australia in 30th spot, Stajcic believes they will provide the Matildas with a stern test in the West. 

“We don’t think that at all. Thailand are an emerging power in South-East Asia,” Stajcic told reporters over the weekend. 

“They have – along with Vietnam – probably spent more on football than a lot of other countries combined.

“We’re not underestimating anyone. We know how difficult it is in the world of football, everyone can play up to a ranking of 100-120, everyone’s competitive.  

“We don’t take anyone lightly and we know it’ll be a great preparation game for us leading into the Asian Cup on April 7th against Korea.”

Monday night’s match will be a historic occasion for the Matildas with the national team having never played an international match in Perth.

And following on from last year’s impressive crowds in Sydney and Newcastle, Stajcic is hopeful of another strong turn-out to support his exciting team.

“It’s very exciting actually. The Matildas have never played here before so it’s very exciting to be playing here in Perth.

“Hopefully we get a big crowd roll up on Monday night against Thailand.  

“…It’s a  great moment now for Perth to come out and support our team.

“And Vice versa, for our team to feel the support and comfort that we have here in Perth. We’ve had fantastic support from WA football, the local government and the state government.

“We’re really pleased to be here and hopefully we can put on a good show.”