Australia captain Jedinak to miss Japan, Thailand qualifiers

Pierre Vaugeois
Août 23, 2017

The Aston Villa midfielder has been battling a groin injury and was excluded from coach Ange Postecoglou's 23-man squad named on Wednesday.

Australia captain Mile Jedinak will miss the last two World Cup qualifiers against Japan and Thailand in a blow for the Socceroos' hopes of booking their tickets to the finals in Russian Federation next year.

"We wanted to give him every chance".

"He was very keen. But speaking to him last night, (he's) not going to get in a game to see how he feels", Postecoglou said at the squad's unveiling.

"Obviously with it being a fairly long trip and with his long absence from gametime, probably he felt he wasn't right and from that perspective, ruled himself out".

"I think it would've been great to have him there, he's the captain and been a big part of what we've done over the last four years".

Key central defender Trent Sainsbury was included despite not having played since picking up a groin injury in Australia's final match at the Confederations Cup against Chile in June.

The seven players to cut from the initial 30-man party along with Jedinak include Aziz Behich, Adam Federici, Ajdin Hrustic, James Jeggo, Riley McGree and Matthew Jurman.

The Socceroos are unbeaten but lie third on their Group B table with 16 points, behind Saudi Arabia on goal difference, with Japan top with 17 points.

The Socceroos will take on Japan in Saitama on August 31, before returning to Australia to host Thailand at AAMI Park on September 5.

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