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Kuwait boss Romeo Jozak to use Australia as a measuring stick

Kuwait coach Romeo Jozak is looking forward to seeing where his team stands in Asian football with the visit of Australia on Monday.

Jozak, a former technical director of the Croatian FA, was charged in July with leading Kuwait back into the upper echelons of Asian football after a two-year FIFA ban from international competitions was lifted in December 2017.

"Here in Kuwait everyone speaks of Australia with huge respect," Jozak told ESPN.

"For us, it will be a bar and against Australia, that bar will be set a bit higher to see whether the players can jump this high. How far are we? Are we far at all?"

The former Legia Warsaw boss is looking forward to seeing the Socceroos close up after defeating Lebanon 1-0 on Friday.

"They went to the World Cup and they have character and a strong mentality in the team. It will also be a good test for them too and I expecting a good game at home.

"I like the personality of my guys though we do lack a bit of experience and continuity."

The FIFA ban had a major effect on Kuwait and the team was not able to complete qualification for the 2019 Asian Cup that takes place in January and the focus is instead on the road to the 2022 World Cup which starts later in the year.

"It was a dark phase. There has been a break in every part of the sport but we are now opening up and moving on," Jozak said. "There is talent here ... this is a serious football country."

The 46-year-old admits that he would prefer to play Australia a little further along the road in their preparations.

"Australia may not be coming at the best time," he said. "I would like to face them next spring when we are better and have strengthened the team but it will be a good game."

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