International Friendly: Canada 0 Australia 3
By Football News
Australia responded to consecutive 6-0 thrashings and the dismissal of their manager by registering a morale-boosting 3-0 win over Canada.
Goals from Josh Kennedy and Dario Vidosic, together with Mathew Leckie's first international strike, sealed the victory at Fulham's Craven Cottage on Tuesday, four days after the Socceroos were humiliated by six goals against France in Paris.
That was the same calamitous scoreline they lost by in Brazil last month, and a second embarrassing result in such quick succession earned head coach Holger Osieck the sack.
His assistant Aurelio Vidmar took charge for the friendly in west London, and oversaw a competent, if uninspiring, win over Canada, who have now played more than 13 hours of football without scoring a goal.
Australia took the lead within 26 seconds of kick-off, when Kennedy headed Mark Bresciano's chipped cross beyond Milan Borjan.
Given their woeful recent record, Canada might have been expected to crumble after conceding so early. But to the credit of Benito Floro's team, they steadied themselves and went on to create the better chances in the first half.
Mitchell Langerak was twice called into action to deny Simeon Jackson and then Tosaint Ricketts, while David Edgar wasted Iain Hume's brilliant pass in behind Australia's defence when he failed to supply Dwayne De Rosario.
Australia, meanwhile, had plenty of possession but struggled to mount a meaningful attack.
Bresciano had the ball in the back of the net midway through the half, but the goal was rightly ruled out for offside.
Australia started brightly after the break and were rewarded in the 52nd minute, when Dario Vidosic used his head to flick Rhys Williams' shot past Borjan.
Matt McKay went close to scoring with a dynamic volleyed scissor kick on 72 minutes, before substitute Leckie rose at the near post to head home David Carney's cross and put his team out of sight with 12 minutes to go.
Vidmar afforded full international debuts to Oliver Bozanic and Jackson Irvine off the bench, offering a glimpse of the future under the man Football Federation Australia appoints to succeed Osieck.