Kuwait outsmarted and outplayed Australia on the way to snatching an unlikely 0-1 win against the Socceroos in Canberra mid-last week.
Australia needed the win which was part of qualifying for the 2011 Asian Cup.
The crucial goal came in the 37th minute from Musaed Neda via close-range header from a wonderful Bader al Mutwa free kick.
The loss was the second home defeat within 12 months and the first in eight games.
Australia’s team was comprised exclusively of A-League players, an experiment no doubt Pim Verbeek will have regretted undertaking.
The local players looked unable to compete with the technical and disciplined Kuwaiti side.
Kuwait almost doubled their lead after Aussie goalkeeper Eugene Galekovic messed up a clearance and the ball rebounded from the post.
Pim Verbeek said “We played too slow. There was not enough movement”, following the match.
The result left Australia bottom of the group with just one point from two games, having drawn their previous qualifier away to Indonesia 0-0 in January.
Kuwait moved to second in the group with three points from two games, a point behind leaders Oman. Indonesia has two points. The top two teams qualify for the 2011 Asian Cup.
Australia should qualify, but there will be pressure on Verbeek if he continues to use the locally based players and they fail to get results.
“It’s not damaging but it’s a very disappointing result,” Verbeek continued. “We’re very disappointed with the result, and also with the performance.”
Qualifying now goes into hiatus, resuming in November, with Australia to host Oman and Indonesia to visit Kuwait.