Australia World Cup Squad 2010 Predictions
With the announcement of Australia's 30 man preliminary World Cup squad on Tuesday, it has motivated me enough to drag out the blog again! Here's my thoughts for the 23 man final squad along with some 'noticeable misses' at the bottom.
Pim has basically said that Schwarz will be his number one while Reading's Federici will surely get the number two spot after not only his club form but excellent performances at the Olympic games for Australia.
With Pim no longer contracted to Australia after the tournament, I see him having no need to persevere with A-League players who he has publicly said that he does not rate and will surely go with Jones ahead of Galekovic.
This third spot that quite frankly will not come close to the field, should also go to youth, and that is something that both Covic and Petkovic lack.
I think we will need to take four centre backs. Neil is obviously the first man on the list and assured of his spot. The rest is fairly open though and I see this as probably where we are weakest. Moore seems like he will walk into the starting side alongside Neil even though he has only been playing in Greece and now the Queensland State League (well training at least). Being older, it could go either way with the rest doing him wonders or lack of match fitness seeing him lose it. Only time will tell.
The other two spots have been thrown wide open with Kisnorbo's injury. Spiranovic was meant to be our savior at the back but not even playing at Uruwa has looked like ruining his chances and Pim's complete ignorance of the Ogmonster has shot Colosimo right into the frame. He was been by far the most consistant defender in the A-League last season and surely can do a job. The last spot I see coming down to either Milligan or North. I would personally go with Milligan because I think he is a much more complete player with a lot more potential than North ever had. Too bad he made some rediculous career choices huh...
Williams will surely be picked as he gives us flexability in being able to play on both the left or the right and I would surely start him at RB. Chipperfield is also in career best form at Basil and will walk into the side at LB.
The fullback cover is where we start to run thin. I see no other option but to pick Carney. Emerton and Wilkshire are in the side remember who can both slot in at RB if required but their names would surely be on the teamsheet in other positions first. We really are running thin in the fullback department. Where else do we go for a LB? Steffanuto has been injured for the entire A-League season. Heffernan, no thanks. Jamieson, no thanks. It is a little bit worrying but with some luck hopefully we can stay healthy and all will be good.
Wilkshire RB AM
A few years ago who would have thought that Luke Wilkshire would turn into probably the most important player in the Socceroos squad. His utility value is priceless but I think his strength lies in the middle of the park and would like to see him start beside Grella at DM who also if fit obviously walks into the side.
Culina and Valeri are worthy backups and I just see no space for Jedinak as I would much rather take a more attack minded squad player rather than an extra DM who will most probably not see game time all tournament.
Cahill, Bresciano, Emerton and Holman are all obvious picks and is realistically where most of our goals are going to come from.
Kewell will either play on the left of the attacking three or leading the line. That is up to Pim and I think he will be one of the most important players on the pitch wherever he plays. All this talk of injury is starting to make me worry!
The final two here in Oar and Vidosic were by far the hardest to pick. Vidosic has been playing very well in Germany of late and scoring goals. His versatility in being able to play up front will surely see him picked. Oar I'm throwing in there as a surprise. Surely if he is picked he will not get much, if any game time but the experience will do him wonders and he has shown he is a game changer. Take the risk!
Carle and Brosque to be unlucky to miss out. Brosque not playing after the A-League will hurt him. It seems as though he has chosen to spend time with his new born child and family rather than go overseas and chase a slim chance at being picked and good on him. He will surely feature in the reckoning for the next squad. Carle on the other hand is a game changer but I just can't find room for him in Pim's system. Very unlucky but I would rather take others.
Only playing the one up front, Kennedy has turned into our number one option up front and while he worked wonders against Asian opposition, I don't know if he will have the same effect against the physically bigger opponents in our group. This is the reason I can see Kewell starting up front ahead of him.
Our striking stocks are also quite thin and I see Ruka being picked ahead of McDonald who has never looked settled in the system. Ruka, while not setting the world alight playing in Holland, offers that something different for late in the game if we are desperate. He is lightening!
The only swap I don't mind the sound of is Kennedy dropping to the bench, Kewell leading the line with Holman coming into the attacking trio behind.
Thoughts and comments below would be appreciated.