Socceroo Viduka awaits FIFA fate - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Socceroo Viduka awaits FIFA fate

By Guy Hand 17/02/2004 08:38:58 PM Comments (0)

Reluctant Socceroo Mark Viduka and his English club Leeds United will find out within 48 hours whether FIFA will ban the striker from the side's next Premier League match.

And other clubs, including Harry Kewell's Liverpool, could find themselves in the firing line if they don't provide medical documentation for the injuries which have forced their players out of Australia's friendly against Venezuela on Thursday.

The Mexican stand-off between the Australian Soccer Association and Leeds continued following Viduka's failure to join his teammates in Caracas for the Venezuela match.

Viduka's no-show is expected to prompt the ASA to make an example of the striker by asking FIFA to invoke rules suspending him from Leeds' weekend match against Manchester United.

But reports from England suggested Leeds was working on a belated sick note for Viduka, while the ASA would only say further discussions had taken place between all parties.

While disciplinary action against Viduka and Leeds is more likely than not according to ASA insiders, other clubs could also find themselves in the association's sights if they don't provide the appropriate medical records for their injured players.

The ASA has asked Liverpool, Blackburn Rovers, Turkish club Genclerbirligi and Spanish side Osasuna for proof of the injuries affecting Kewell, Brett Emerton, Josip Skoko and striker John Aloisi.

All four withdrew from the Socceroos match.

"Once received, ASA will then consider using FIFA regulations to enforce its player selection policy as required," the ASA said in a statement.

Socceroos coach Frank Farina said he was confident the ASA would handle the issue properly and refuted suggestions he had been pressured by Australian soccer's governing body to select Viduka despite the striker's unwillingness to play.

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