3 changes to Australia squad for World Cup qualifier
SYDNEY: Australia football coach Ange Postecoglou has named Austria-born midfielder Jimmy Jeggo in his squad for World Cup qualifiers against Saudi Arabia and Japan next month.
The 24-year-old Jeggo, born in Vienna, played for the Melbourne Victory and Adelaide United in Australia's A-League before joining Sturm Graz in the Austrian Bundesliga. He is now in line to make his debut in matches against Saudi Arabia at Jeddah on Oct. 6 and Japan in Melbourne on Oct. 11.
There are three changes to Postecoglou's squad after recent wins over Iraq and the United Arab Emirates. As well as Jeggo's selection, defender Bailey Wright returns from injury to the 23-man squad and Craig Goodwin is back after last playing in a friendly with England in May.
"We've made a couple of slight tweaks to the squad in line with our mantra of selecting players who are in form and fitness," Postecoglou said. "We'd like to have a good look at Craig Goodwin and James Jeggo, who have started their seasons well in Europe."
Former Everton forward Tim Cahill is the only A-League player named in the squad.
Goalkeeper Mat Ryan has held his place despite reports from Spain that he faces three weeks out with a strained knee. Ryan hasn't played for his club Valencia since returning from national team duty a fortnight ago.
Captain Mile Jedinak has also been named after recovering from an injury suffered while playing for Aston Villa.
Australia currently leads its qualifying group and can consolidate first place with a win over Saudi Arabia. The top two nations from the six-team group, which also includes Thailand, qualify for the 2018 World Cup with a third team sent to a playoff.
Australia: Adam Federici, Mitchell Langerak, Mathew Ryan, Milos Degenek, Alex Gersbach, Ryan McGowan, Trent Sainsbury, Brad Smith, Matthew Spiranovic, Bailey Wright, Craig Goodwin, Jackson Irvine, Mile Jedinak, James Jeggo, Massimo Luongo, Mark Milligan, Aaron Mooy, Tommy Rogic, Tim Cahill, Chris Ikonomidis, Tomi Juric, Robbie Kruse, Mathew Leckie.