Australia coach Ange Postecoglou has favoured youth in his latest squad ahead of the Socceroos’ upcoming international friendly against England at the Stadium of Light.
The Socceroos take on England on May 28 and Postecoglou is backing a number of the nation’s youngest talents to upset the old enemy, with Jamie Maclaren, Stefan Mauk, Brad Inman and Milos Degenek all in line for senior international debuts.
Postecoglou’s hand had been forced in part by the fact that the friendly does not fall on a FIFA international date, meaning stars like Tim Cahill, Trent Sainsbury, Mathew Spiranovic, Apostolos Giannou and Nathan Burns have not been released by their Asian clubs.
Mauk comes in after a mid-season switch from Melbourne City to Adelaide did wonders for his form and confidence, while Brisbane Roar’s Maclaren makes the team following a 20-goal A-League haul this season.
Inman’s selection is reward for his 39 appearances for Crew Alexandra in League One this season.
Degenek – who has represented both Australian and Serbia at youth level – is also included in after making 24 league appearances for 2. Bundesliga outfit 1860 Munich.
Former Adelaide United left-back Craig Goodwin will hope to add to his two caps after his fine A-League form this season earned him a move to Eredivisie side Sparta Rotterdam.
Massimo Luongo, Aaron Mooy and Tom Rogic provide Postecoglou plenty of creativity in midfield, while captain Mile Jedinak and Mark Milligan – who have 108 caps between them – offer more combative, experienced midfield options.
Australia’s 23-man squad in full:
Goalkeepers: Adam Federici (AFC Bournemouth), Mitchell Langerak (Stuttgart), Mathew Ryan (Valencia)
Defenders: Aziz Behich (Bursaspor), Milos Degenek (1860 Munich), Craig Goodwin (Sparta Rotterdam), Josh Risdon (Perth Glory), Brad Smith (Liverpool), Bailey Wright (Preston North End), Alex Wilkinson (Melbourne City)
Midfielders: Chris Ikonomidis (Lazio), Jackson Irvine (Ross County), Brad Inman (Crewe Alexandra), Mile Jedinak (Crystal Palace), Massimo Luongo (QPR), Stefan Mauk (Adelaide United), Matthew McKay (Brisbane Roar), Mark Milligan (Baniyas FC), Aaron Mooy (Melbourne City), Tom Rogic (Celtic)
Forwards: Tomi Juric (Roda JC), Robbie Kruse (Bayer Leverkusen), Jamie Maclaren (Brisbane Roar)
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