St. Pauli Duo Impresses At AFC Asian Cup

St. Pauli duo Jackson Irvine and Connor Metcalfe have impressed for Australia as they top their group in the ongoing AFC Asian Cup.

Whilst AFCON 2023 grabs the headlines, in Hamburg, all eyes are on Qatar, which is hosting the AFC Asian tournament. St Pauli has two players featuring for the Socceroos, and it’s fair to say they’re enjoying some success.

Jackson Irvine is having an excellent tournament. He bagged in Australia’s opening game, a 2-0 victory against India, before adding a second in his second outing, as Syria were defeated 1-0. He didn’t score in the final group game, a straight fight between them and Uzbekistan to see who topped the group, but he did play the full 90 minutes of the 1-1 draw.

24-year-old Metcalfe, formerly of Melbourne City, has been used a little more sparingly; he played approximately an hour of both the opening fixtures but was a late sub in the Uzbekistan game.

Both players have featured heavily for St Pauli in the 2.Bundesliga this season, with Irvine playing the full 90 minutes of their final game before the winter break, a 1-1 draw with SV Wehen Wiesbaden. Metcalfe came on in that game as a sub moments after the visitors levelled. Ironically, the only other 2.Bundesliga with the Australian team is John Iredale, who scored Wiesbaden’s goal in that game.

St Pauli doesn’t seem to be missing their Australian duo, as they returned to the top of the table this weekend. The Kiezkicker registered a 2-0 win against Kaiserslautern, Elias Saad and Marcel Hartel bagging the goals, whilst title rivals Kiel were surprisingly beaten at home by relegation-threatened  Braunschweig.

Site Opinion

St. Pauli fans will be delighted their players are doing so well but perhaps less enamoured with the fact they miss crucial fixtures. Australia’s next game is on January 28th, against either Palestine or Indonesia, just 48 hours before St Pauli hosts Dusseldorf in a top-of-the-table clash.

Fabian Hürzeler‘s side is still unbeaten this season, and they’re going to be a huge scalp for anyone. Also, given their cult status and the atmosphere generated at the Millerntor, they’re a cup final for many teams, and the sooner they get key players back, the better.

 

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