• Socceroos coach Ange Postecoglou (AAP)Source: AAP
Socceroos skipper Mile Jedinak has been included in the Australia’s final 25-man squad to face Honduras in the do-or-die World Cup play-off next month.
Source:
The World Game
31 Oct 2017 - 10:19 AM  UPDATED 31 Oct 2017 - 10:19 AM

Coach Ange Postecoglou named his final squad on Tuesday with Mark Birighitti, Mustafa Amini, Ajdin Hrustic, Awer Mabil and Jamie Maclaren the five players to have all been dropped for the crucuial home and away clashes in San Pedro Sula on November 11 and in Sydney on November 15.

Mark Milligan and Mathew Leckie have been included in the 25-man squad, but both are suspended for the first leg.

Norway-based defender Alex Gersbach also returns to Postecoglou’s latest squad in place of the injured Brad Smith, with uncapped Austria-based midfielder James Jeggo also included.

The 33-year-old Jedinak was injured and missed the Asian playoff win over Syria which earned the Socceroos a spot in the last-ditch, home-and-away series against Honduras for a place at next year's World Cup in Russia.

His return for Aston Villa last weekend in England was enough to earn him a seat on the plane to Central America, the last away trip on the road to Russia.

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Postecoglou has the option to cut his 25-man squad by two after the away leg, or to bring his entire group to Sydney and make a late call on availability.

Australia can only name a bench of 12.

Postecoglou is confident that the group selected to tackle Honduras in San Pedro Sula and Sydney represents a good combination of experience and form.

“It has been pleasing to see so many of our players performing strongly for their clubs domestically and abroad, and I believe that puts us in good stead for our upcoming play-off matches,” said Postecoglou.

“With two games in five days and extensive travel between the fixtures, every member of our squad will play an important role this November.

“We’ll be looking to get positive result in San Pedro Sula, before aiming to seal a place at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia in front of our home fans in Sydney."

SOCCEROOS’ 25-MAN SQUAD

Goalkeepers: Mitchell Langerak (Levante, Spain), Mat Ryan (Brighton, England), Danny Vukovic (Genk, Belgium).

Defenders: Aziz Behich (Bursaspor, Turkey), Milos Degenek (Yokohama F Marinos, Japan), Alex Gersbach (Rosenborg, Norway), Matthew Jurman (Suwon, South Korea), Ryan McGowan (Al Sharjah, UAE), Josh Risdon (Western Sydney), Trent Sainsbury (Jiangsu Suning, China), Bailey Wright (Bristol City, England).

Midfielders: Craig Goodwin (Sparta Rotterdam, Netherlands), Jackson Irvine (Hull City, England), Mile Jedinak (Aston Villa, England), James Jeggo (Sturm Graz, Austria), Massimo Luongo (QPR, England), Mark Milligan (Melbourne Victory)*, Aaron Mooy (Huddersfield Town, England), Tom Rogic (Celtic, Scotland), James Troisi (Melbourne Victory)

Attackers: Tim Cahill (Melbourne City), Tomi Juric (Luzern, Switzerland), Robbie Kruse (Bochum, Germany), Mathew Leckie (Hertha Berlin, Germany)*, Nikita Rukavytsya (Maccabi Haifa, Israel).

* Milligan and Leckie are suspended for the away leg.

WORLD CUP QUALIFYING PLAYOFF DETAILS

Away leg: Estadio Olimpico Metropolitano, San Pedro Sula, Honduras

Kick-off: Friday 10 November, 4pm local (Saturday 11 November, 9am AEDT)

Home leg: ANZ Stadium, Sydney

Kick-off: Wednesday 15 November, 8pm local/AEDT