Socceroos skipper Jedinak out to impress

Socceroos skipper Mile Jedinak hopes he has put his recent injury woes behind him as he fights for a place in Bert van Marwijk’s new-look Australia side.

The 33-year-old is expected to lead the Socceroos out when they take on Norway in Oslo on Saturday morning (AEDT) in what will be van Marwijk’s first game in charge.

Jedinak’s 2017 was blighted by a niggling groin injury which forced him to miss the back end of his club side Aston Villa’s season, Australia’s Confederations Cup campaign and crunch 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifiers against Japan and Syria.

The inspirational leader returned for the Socceroos do-or-die two-legged play-off against Honduras, scoring a hat-trick to secure Australia’s ticket to Russia.

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Back to full health after another injury scare in December, Jedinak said he was excited to return to the national fold and prove himself to the new coach.

“I had a little bit of a spell out at the start of the season, it’s nice to be back playing," Jedinak said.

“I’m really enjoying my football, to be back here and for my club is exciting. It’s just nice to be playing regularly and contributing.

“Coming together with the national team is always a good and it’s been great to spend some time together again as a group.”

There has been a different feeling among Jedinak’s teammates during the latest national team camp as the 26-man-sqaud look to impress van Marwijk ahead of the World Cup.

“It’s only normal when you have a new coach and new staff that everyone wants to impress and put their best foot forward,” he said.



“We all know the circumstances and it’s just important to get the work in now.

“With that comes a lot of excitement and overall we are preparing for a world cup and to do it with a new manager and a new style.”

Despite being the Socceroos incumbent captain, Jedinak said he is no lock for World Cup selection.

“I have to get to Russia first. If that does happen well it is the biggest stage in world football,” he said.

“For me it really is the challenge ahead and lets just see how far we can go.”


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2 min read
Published 23 March 2018 at 4:01pm
By Nick Houghton