Viduka set to 'retire' after Asian Cup - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Viduka set to 'retire' after Asian Cup

14/06/2007 11:46:24 PM Comments (0)

Socceroos striker Mark Viduka had decided to retire from internationals this week but had a change of heart and will play in July's Asian Cup.

He is now expected to retire after the tournament.

Viduka, 31, had officially informed senior Football Federation Australia officials on Wednesday night that he would be quitting immediately, according to a News Limited newspaper.

But Australia coach Graham Arnold and FFA high performance director John Boultbee swayed his decision.

The FFA had organised a nationwide teleconference for 6am (AEST) on Friday morning with Viduka as well as another 11am press opportunity at Sydney's Marriott Hotel but both were cancelled.

It was reported Viduka wanted to bypass the Asian tournament to concentrate on the preseason with his new club Newcastle United in the English Premier League.

Melbourne Victory Danny Allsopp was on standby to replace the World Cup captain.

"It looked like his allegiance to his new club would win over him playing for his country again," a Newcastle United official was quoted as saying.

"I think that Mark will play out the tournament with the Socceroos then announce his retirement from the international arena to concentrate on his new role with the Magpies."

Viduka has scored six goals in 38 appearances for the Socceroos, debuting in a 1-0 win over South Africa in Adelaide in 1994.

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