The Australian Under-19 national football team, the Young Socceroos, has arrived in Jakarta to compete at the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) U-19 Championship 2018.
The 23-player squad will start their campaign against Korea Republic on 19 October, followed by matches against Vietnam (22 October) and Jordan (25 October).
Speaking at a reception at the Australian Embassy to welcome the team to Jakarta, Australian Ambassador to Indonesia Gary Quinlan said sport can help strengthen connections between Australians and Indonesians.
“The shared values of sportsmanship, competition, teamwork and fair play that we see in sport help bring people, especially young people, together,” Quinlan said.
During their visit, the Young Socceroos will hold training clinics for Indonesian students from schools that are part of the Australia-Indonesia BRIDGE School Partnerships Program.
The clinics build on the growing cooperation between the Football Federation of Australia and the Football Association of Indonesia (PSSI), including through a trilateral Indonesia-Australia-Germany project to support the development of coaches at the grassroots level.
A number of Australian footballers have also played at Indonesian clubs, including most recently Bruce Djité at PSM Makassar.
“2018 has been a major sporting year for Indonesia. We congratulate Indonesia on its successful hosting of the Asian Games and Asian Para Games, and now, the AFC U-19 Championship,” Mr Quinlan said.
The four teams that make the semi-finals of the AFC U-19 Championship will qualify for the FIFA Under-20 World Cup 2019 to be held in Poland.