Jedinak out of Socceroos' crucial World Cup qualifiers

Ruben Hill
August 23, 2017

Australia's hopes of qualifying for next year's World Cup have been dealt a blow after injury concerns forced skipper Mile Jedinak out of a 23-man squad to face Japan and Thailand in crunch qualifiers.

"We wanted to give him every chance and he was very keen to be a part of it", Postecoglou said while announcing the squad on Wednesday. "But speaking to him, he's not going to get in a game to see how he feels", Postecoglou said. "From that perspective, he ruled himself out", he added.

Defender Trent Sainsbury was included in the 23-man squad despite last playing at the Confederations Cup.

The Socceroos now sit third in their qualifying group and need to take at least a point from group leaders Japan if they are a chance to automatically seal their spot in Russian Federation next year. Postecoglou said numerous selection decisions were made on the back of strong performances from the start of the European season.

Coach Ange Postecoglou said he opted for experience for the games - against Japan in Saitama on 31 August, and against Thailand in Melbourne on 5 September - with Awer Mabil and Danny Vukovic the only uncapped players.

Goalkeepers: Mitchell Langerak (Stuttgart, Germany), Mathew Ryan (Brighton, England), Daniel Vukovic (Genk, Belgium).

At the Confederations Cup, which Jedinak also missed, Postecoglou mainly used experienced defensive midfielder Mark Milligan to provide cover for the more attack-minded Aaron Mooy and Massimo Luongo.

Defence: Milos Degenek (Yokohama Marinos, Japan), Alex Gersbach (Rosenborg, Norway), Ryan McGowan (Al Sharjah, UAE), Trent Sainsbury (Jiangsu Suning, China), Brad Smith (Bournemouth, England), Matthew Spiranovic (Hangzhou, China), Bailey Wright (Bristol City, England).

Strikers: Tim Cahill, Tomi Juric, Robbie Kruse, Mathew Leckie, Awer Mabil, Jamie Maclaren. Find us on Facebook too!

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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