The Socceroos rack up the records in 2002 qualifying.
There’s nothing more demoralising than being on the wrong end of an absolute drubbing, so spare a thought for the players of American Samoa who were soundly thrashed 31
-0 by Australia in a 2002 World Cup Qualifier – the biggest margin of victory in WC qualifying history.
Socceroo forward Archie Thompson also wrote himself into the record books by bagging 13 of the goals – the most scored by a player in a preliminary match.
The Socceroos were by far the strongest team in the Oceania Zone that year, putting 22 past Tonga and 11 past Samoa. They went on to beat New Zealand 6-1 over two legs of a play-off and were then pitted against Uruguay – who finished fifth in the CONMEBOL group – in yet another play-off.
Unfortunately for the Aussies, it proved a match too far and the South American’s were victorious over the two legs to claim the final World Cup berth.