Australia coach Ange Postecoglou has selected his 25-man squad for the Socceroos’ final hurdle ahead of the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
The former Brisbane Roar manager has come under heavy scrutiny for team selections, tactics and results during Australia’s qualifying campaign, with many calling for him to resign as a result of failing to qualify directly for next year’s finals in Russia.
Ange Postecoglou has remained defiant in the midst of criticism, maintaining that his players are focused on qualifying for the World Cup.
“I’ve been called egocentric, selfish. There’s been calls for me to get sacked. But you know what? I’m still here. I won’t change who I am and what I believe in,” said Postecoglou in a press conference following his World Cup Playoff squad announcement.
“My legacy is going to be someone who stuck to their guns and their beliefs and their values, and no amount of mud thrown at me will change that.”
“I won’t talk to them about it (his future) because my future is not why they are there. They are there to represent their country.”
The Socceroos are aiming for their fourth-straight World Cup appearance. Standing in their way is Central American outfit Honduras, who they must overcome in the two-legged contest.
Australia travel to San Pedro Sula on November 10 for the first leg before playing on home soil in Sydney on November 15 for the return leg.
Australia’s World Cup Playoff Squad:
Goalkeepers: Mitch Langerak, Mat Ryan, Danny Vukovic
Defenders: Aziz Behich, Milos Degenek, Alex Gersbach, Matthew Jurman, Ryan McGowan, Josh Risdon, Trent Sainsbury, Bailey Wright.
Midfielders: Craig Goodwin, Jackson Irvine, Mile Jedinak, James Jeggo, Massimo Luongo, Mark Milligan, Aaron Mooy, Tom Rogic, James Troisi.
Forwards: Tim Cahill, Tomi Juric, Robbie Kruse, Mathew Leckie, Nikita Rukavytsya.