Thailand face a tough challenge reaching the fourth round of qualifying for the 2014 FIFA World Cup, after being drawn in a third round qualifying group against top-seeded Australia, Saudi Arabia and Oman.
There was mixed reaction from Thailand Team Manager Anucha Nakasai who remained positive despite the presence of heavyweight footballing nation Australia in the same group.
Speaking after the draw was made in Rio de Janerio, Mr Nakasai firmly believes his team could raise a few eye brows during qualifying, and even cause an upset against Saudi Arabia, a side he believes is past it's best.
"They have lost a lot of their best players and I think we can take them on without any problem," he said
But Mr Nakasai acknowledges the key to Thailand's success could come in the two fixtures against Oman. "If we can get six points from Oman we have a good chance of advancing," he observed. "Thailand has a decent record against them and could well beat them".
Of course the toughest challenge lies in wait: Australia. "The Australian players are tall but they are a bit slow. I think we have the speed with our short-passing game to upset them, but of course it will be difficult."
Only the group winners and runners-up from each of group- there are four groups- will advance to the fourth round. Thailand will open their third round campaign away to Australia at the Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane on September 2nd.
Thailand has never reached the World Cup Finals before.
(Image from Soccerway.com)