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Australia keen to take 2020 Copa America chance

After being stripped of Brazil's captaincy, Stewart Robson feels Neymar is far too selfish and "a showman" to ever have been named captain. Domestic ID:

Australia's participation in the 2020 Copa America is not yet confirmed but would be a "fantastic" opportunity for the Socceroos to test themselves against some of the best players in the world, coach Graham Arnold said on Thursday.

Brazilian media reported on Wednesday that Australia and Qatar, the last two champions of Asia, had been invited to play in next year's edition of the continental championship along with 10 South American teams.

"It's a wonderful opportunity. It's really exciting opportunity not only myself and the players but for the country," Arnold told reporters in a conference call.

"The invitation, I believe, is there. I think there's still a fair bit of paperwork to go through yet but until that's done, I pretty much can't say too much but it's something that would be absolutely fantastic for the players and the nation.

"Players [who] get the opportunity to play in those type of games and those type of tournaments is where the players go up to another level.

"And when they go to another level they go to a bigger stage at club-land."

- When is the Copa America?
- Full Copa America fixtures schedule

Qatar and Japan are the guest teams at this year's Copa America in Brazil, which starts June 14.

Australia were knocked out of the group stage at last year's World Cup in Russia and had a disappointing Asian Cup in January, where their title defence was ended by hosts United Arab Emirates in the quarterfinals.

A second-string Australia play a strong South Korea team in a friendly on Friday in Busan, their first match since the Asian Cup flop.

Arnold included only a handful of players that featured at the Asian Cup in his squad for South Korea, with captain Mark Milligan and midfielder Aaron Mooy among the many rested for World Cup qualifying later in the year.

Full-back Aziz Behich, who will wear the captain's armband in his 36th international, is the most experienced player in the squad along with recalled centre-back Matthew Spiranovic.

Since taking over the Socceroos after the World Cup, Arnold has tried to rejuvenate the team's attack, opting for a trio of interchangeable forwards rather than a traditional striker.

The ploy fell flat at the Asian Cup where Australia managed only six goals in five matches.

Arnold has Mitchell Duke, a late replacement after Chris Ikonomidis was ruled out with a shoulder problem, and the recalled Adam Taggart as two options to play up front.

Duke played the last of his four internationals in 2013 but has been recalled after a strong return to the A-League with the Western Sydney Wanderers following several years in Japan.

Taggart will hope to add to his eight caps after five years in the international wilderness and knows South Korean football well, having had a bright start with Suwon Bluewings since joining the four-time K-League champions in January.

Arnold was coy on whether he would persist with a front three against the Taeguk Warriors and said he had not decided on the makeup of his team.

"It's a very flexible front-line, it's a front-line that has a lot of pace and a lot of individual quality," he said.

"So, we're looking forward to a great performance tomorrow night with a lot of energy in front of a sold-out stadium."

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