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Jun 11, 2013

Kruse not quite perfect, says Osieck

One memorable goal, two assists, man-of-the-match honours - and a sideline rocket from Socceroos coach Holger Osieck.

That was Robbie Kruse's unforgettable night out at Etihad Stadium as he played a starring role in Australia's important 4-0 World Cup qualifier victory over Jordan on Tuesday.

While Kruse provided attacking exhilaration to virtually all who watched the Socceroos put a foot in next year's World Cup finals, Osieck saw room for improvement - concerned with some of the defensive aspects of the 24-year-old's game.

"You probably saw me talking to him a little bit at the sideline. There was some elements that I didn't like," Osieck said of Kruse.

"Maybe you saw it differently. He knows how I assess his performance.

"I don't want to go into details, but a game is not just running forward."

To be fair, Osieck liked most of what he saw from Kruse.

Tormenting Jordan with his pace, killer crosses, and a second-half goal for the ages - nutmegging a defender with a blind turn before slamming home to seal Australia's victory.

It showed just what an attacking weapon Kruse can be for his country - growing in confidence and stature after a super season in Germany's top-flight and a transfer to Champions League-bound Bayer Leverkusen for 2013-14.

"Even coming into the camp, I've been feeling fairly confident. I've had a good year in the Bundesliga, sealed a dream move to Leverkusen, so it's hopefully reflected in my performance," Kruse said.

"I'm just a cog in the team. We played wonderfully tonight, but it's just half the job.

"The most important thing is to recover for next week. It means nothing if we don't get the win (against Iraq) next week."

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