Moore, Culina in, but no Kewell, Viduka - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Moore, Culina in, but no Kewell, Viduka

By Guy Hand 28/01/2005 06:06:03 PM Comments (0)

The Socceroos have recalled skipper Craig Moore and promoted form midfielder Jason Culina for their friendly against South Africa in Durban next month.

But regular first-choice players Harry Kewell, Mark Viduka, Stan Lazaridis and John Aloisi have been left out of the 20-man squad, with coach Frank Farina admitting he did not want to include any players who were on the road back from injury.

All four have had injury problems and Farina said recent experiences with Lazaridis and Italian-based midfielder Vince Grella, who were brought into previous Socceroos squads after layoffs, had made him more cautious.

"I don't think it's in our interests to be risking these players at what is an important stage, 10 months out from the most important games the national team will face," Farina said.

"I have been down the path before where players have come off the back of long term injuries, long periods of difficulty, calling them into squads where they have to travel.

"In every situation we have done that, the player has broken down."

Both Kewell and Viduka are currently sidelined with injury, although Liverpool star Kewell believes he is over the worst of his problems and is ready for a return to football.

Moore returns to the side for the match on February 9 after several injury problems, including a hernia operation, which have limited him to a handful of games in the past 12 months for his country.

Moore transferred from Scottish club Glasgow Rangers to German side Borussia Moenchengladbach earlier this month and scored a goal on debut to earn his first national team call-up since the Olympics.

Culina, formerly with NSL clubs Sydney United and Sydney Olympic, has been starring for Dutch first division club Twente Enschede.

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