Farina Names Final 20-man Squad
Frank Farina has unveiled his final 20-man squad to contest the 2004 OFC Nations Cup Final, beginning in Honiara this Saturday and concluding in Sydney next Tuesday.
By Ben Coonan Frank Farina has unveiled his final 20-man squad to contest the 2004 OFC Nations Cup Final, beginning in Honiara this Saturday and concluding in Sydney next Tuesday. Marco Bresciano, Tim Cahill, Scott Chipperfield, Craig Moore, Danny Tiatto and Mark Viduka were all late omissions from the squad due to injury, meaning strikers Ante Milicic, Archie Thompson and Max Vieri, defender Steve Laybutt and Under 23-s Luke Wilkshire and Jon McKain have been called into the final squad. The full squad is: John Aloisi (Osasuna, SPAIN), Simon COLOSIMO (Pahang, MALAYSIA), Ahmad ELRICH (Busan Icons, KOREA), Brett EMERTON (Blackburn Rovers, ENGLAND), Vince GRELLA (Parma, ITALY), Zeljko KALAC (Perugia, ITALY), Harry KEWELL (Liverpool, ENGLAND), Steve LAYBUTT (KAA Gent, BELGIUM), Jon McKAIN (FC National Bucuresti, ROMANIA), Ante MILICIC (Pahang, MALAYSIA), Kevin MUSCAT (Millwall, ENGLAND), Lucas NEILL (Blackburn Rovers, ENGLAND), Tony POPOVIC (Crystal Palace, ENGLAND), Mark SCHWARZER (Middlesbrough, ENGLAND), Josip SKOKO (Genclerbirligi, TURKEY), Mile STERJOVSKI (Basel, SWITZERLAND), Archie THOMPSON (Lierse, BELGIUM), Tony VIDMAR (Cardiff City, WALES), Max VIERI (Ternana, ITALY), Luke WILKSHIRE (Bristol City, ENGLAND) Farina offered no indication as to who would wear the captain-s armband in Moore-s absence, with goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer not necessarily the most obvious option, despite getting the nod for the Turkey matches in May earlier this year. “We-ll just wait and see until everyone gets in, I haven-t made a decision on that one yet,” said Farina in response to a suggestion the Middlesbrough custodian was an automatic choice to deputise Moore. “I think the likes of Josip Skoko, who did it in Adelaide for us as well, Tony Vidmar who captained the side throughout that tournament. We have a few candidates, there-s no shortage.” In light of the glut of injuries sustained by Farina-s squad, positive news arrived in the form of a match fit Harry Kewell (pictured above), who is one of ten Socceroos to have landed at their Brisbane camp this morning. “I-ve spoken to Harry this morning briefly and obviously I-ll be talking with him again, he-s feeling alright,” spoke Farina of the Liverpool starlets mooted ankle and hamstring trouble. “He-s definitely still got a problem, but that-s most probably a question for the medical staff to answer, but he-s still got a major problem as he has had for the past month or two months.” The Socceroos will continue to arrive in Brisbane up until tomorrow afternoon, when Crystal Palace defender Tony Popovic finalises the 20 man camp, fresh from Palace-s 2-0 win over Fulham overnight. Farina will hold a light training session this afternoon, followed by more extensive drills before Thursday-s departure to Honiara. “Until we have everyone in, which won-t happen until Wednesday, we-re not going to be able to do a real lot of work in terms of intensity and it-s not needed because they are all fit,” said Farina. “It-s just a matter of getting them into a formation and aware of the manner in which we-re going to play.”