THE Socceroos Confederations Cup hopes are on the line after a 1-1 draw with Cameroon in St Petersburg.
The Australian side played without spark against the African champions but earned a point when Mark Milligan converted a penalty to cancel out Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa’s first-half finish.
After a confident start the Socceroos went down hill failing to produce a performance to be proud of, losing the bulk of the battles and the shot count 19-5.
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The African champions were superior both in the air and on the deck.
Impressive youngster Christian Bassogog enjoyed a couple of early sighters, exposing Milos Degenek’s lack of pace.
The Socceroo defender was then found wanting for the opener, when Zambo Anguissa beat him to a long ball and dinked an effort over rushing goalkeeper Mat Ryan.
Australia picked up the pace in the second half with Mat Leckie sening a pair of dangerous balls into the box but they were wasted by Tomi Juric and Tom Rogic.
The match swung again and on 57 minutes, Australia received a life line with Vincent Aboubakar sending a shot both narrowly wide and through Zambo Anguissa’s legs just a metre from goal with Ryan beaten.
The move should have put the game on Cameroon’s terms but instead, a driving run from Gersbach brought Milligan to the spot.
The impressive 20-year-old was brashly tackled in the box by Ernest Mabouka and the Australian skipper converted.
They now play Chile in Moscow for a must-win clash to reach the semi-finals in Russia.