Socceroo defender Matthew Sprianovic says Japan’s game plan of allowing Australia to maintain possession was unexpected.
In the final phase of world cup qualification, Australia struggled to break Japan down in the first half after conceding in the first five minutes.
Spiranovic said he was wary Japan wanted to frustrate Australia and praised his side's second half fight back which could have won the home nation the game.
“We probed, we moved them around, we didn’t want to fall into the trap of forcing things,” Spiranovic said.
“In the end we created enough chances and Tomi had a decent chance at the top of the box that we could’ve got maximum points. They were comfortable sitting back trying to play that counter-attack.
“I don’t think they suffocated us, they scored the goal and were happy to drop 10 players behind the ball. I don’t think they were pressing us aggressively in our half.
“We found it hard to get our attacking players on the ball, so in that sense maybe they did suffocate us a little bit in the first half, but I think in the second half, we reacted well and it was a positive display.”
Spiranovic said he took positives out the game adding the playing group was content sitting second on the table on eight points.
“In the last two games we put ourselves on the back foot with the goals we’ve conceded, we’ve had to find our way back into the game twice,” he said.
“I think going to future games we know we’ve got that in us, be it would be nice to start off in a better way and even score that first goal and see what the teams want to do then, it’ll be hard for them to react against us if we do go a goal up.”