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Only an under-strength Iraq sits between the Socceroos and their ticket to Brazil for what would be a third straight World Cup appearance for Australia.

After a comprehensive 4-0 win over Jordan a week ago, it would appear the biggest challenge for coach Holger Osieck is to ensure his squad aren't already thinking about the sands of the Rio beaches.

While Iraq are out of contention for qualification and with a young and inexperienced squad making the trip to Sydney, it would seem a formality the home side will get the job done.

On the eve of the biggest qualifying match in years, skipper Lucas Neill is adamant no one has looked past the challenge of toppling Iraq.

"The atmosphere's been very low-key in a positive way," Neill said. "Everybody's been very calm. The manager and the senior players have made sure no one's talking about dancing the samba.

"Nobody's in Brazil yet. The fact is We need one game, one win. Then we can start thinking about all the dreams coming true.

"There's no easy games in football. Football at any level and any opponent needs to be respected.

"Just because you don’t know anything about them doesn’t mean they are not good. We've never underestimated any of our opponents."

Osieck was giving little away about his starting line-up for the ANZ Stadium clash, only confirming all 26 members in the squad were fit and available for selection.

While it would be a surprise to see any changes to the side that has performed so well over the last fortnight, the same can't be said for their opponents.

Iraq's two most experienced players Younis Mahmoud and Nashat Akram have retired from the national side meaning the majority of the squad is made of young talent on their way to the Under-20 World Cup in Turkey later this month.

Osieck admits the unknown make-up of the Iraqi side, coupled with the fact they have nothing to lose, makes them a dangerous proposition.

"You should never underrate the new generation. We know from their Olympic team as well they have a lot of potential," the German said of Iraq.

"They want to impress as well. They have a new coach, they want to make their mark and they want to get a starting position in the team.

"They will challenge us. They will not hide and knowing all Iraqi teams are athletically educated, have pace and good technique.

"They will definitely give us a tough time. But we are prepared I can assure you."

When asked what impact the fans can have in getting the Socceroos over the line, Neill said: "Iraq's a team that's not going to be intimidated.

"They are a team of fighters, possibly because of the nature of the way they been brought up. It's going to be difficult we have to get into them early.

"But the way the crowd can help is by singing the national anthem like they did in the Uruguay game all those years ago which was hair standing up on the back of your neck stuff.

"From there it gives the boys that buzz to go out and start well and put Iraq immediately under pressure."

While a victory will ensure progression to Brazil, anything less will make for a nervous few hours before the other game in the group between Jordan and Oman.

If Australia draw or lose, they will need Jordan to avoid a defeat to remain in the automatic qualifying spot, otherwise they will fall into the lottery of the play-offs as the third best team in the group.

• Earlier the NSW government revealed the Cahill Expressway alongside Sydney Opera House and leading to Sydney Harbour Bridge would be renamed Tim Cahill Expressway for the next 48 hours to celebrate the Socceroo legend.

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