McDonald out, but Cahill determined to play
Reports out of Manama reveal that striker Scott McDonald will not play in Wednesday’s 2010 FIFA World Cup – Round 4 qualifying game against Bahrain because of a virus.
Reports out of Manama reveal that striker Scott McDonald will not play in Wednesday-s 2010 FIFA World Cup - Round 4 qualifying game against Bahrain because of a virus.
The virus saw McDonald miss Celtic's 2-1 win over Hamilton Academical on Sunday with his manager Gordon Strachan insisting that he was in no condition to fly to Bahrain for Wednesday-s game.
McDonald-s absence makes him the fifth player from the original squad (other-s include Brett Emerton, Vince Grella, Craig Moore and Matt Spiranovic), that have been ruled out of the tie, while replacement call-up Mark Milligan was also ruled out with injury.
On a brighter note, Tim Cahill has arrived in Manama, despite limping off the field late in the game with a heel injury.
The Everton midfielder, who missed the majority of the Round 3 qualifying series, is hopeful of taking his place on the park, despite his sore heel, revealing that it-s something he has been playing through for some weeks and may require surgery further down the track.
“I-m always happy to play 90 minutes for Australia or Everton,” Cahill revealed after an evening training session.
“It-s such a crucial time in this qualifying campaign that every single player is needed for this big game and will stand us in good stead for the rest of the group (matches).
While acknowledged that his manager at Everton David Moyes was none to pleased with him being in Manama, Cahill never had any doubts about being here. “This a World Cup qualifier and this is one of the most important games of our group that everyone, as a collective group, puts as much into this campaign as we can, because of what it means to our country.”
Overnight, Mark Bresciano, Richard Garcia, Harry Kewell, Luke Wilkshire, Michael Petkovic and Jacob Burns joined the squad, which means Verbeek will have just one session with his full compliment of players.
Bahrain itself will not be at full strength, with four players missing through suspension. They also lost a warm-up game last week 4-0 against Saudi Arabia, but will be desperate to stay in touch with the Australia, Japan and Qatar who are in the prime positions after the first three games of the ten rounds of qualifying.