Archie Thompson Added To Socceroos Squad
The Qantas Socceroo squad travelling to Bahrain for this week’s opening Asian Cup qualifying match has been bolstered by the inclusion of striker Archie Thompson.
The Qantas Socceroo squad travelling to Bahrain for this week-s opening Asian Cup qualifying match has been bolstered by the inclusion of striker Archie Thompson.
A member of the squad that defeated Uruguay last November, Thompson (pictured right) has been released for the match by his club PSV Eindhoven, coached by current Qantas Socceroo coach Guus Hiddink.
“We have been working behind the scenes for a few weeks now regarding the possible availability of Archie, and following PSV-s match on Friday, which was their last prior to this Wednesday-s Champions League match, Archie is now available to join the national team squad,” said Socceroos assistant coach Graham Arnold.
“Archie has shown on numerous occasions what an important asset he is to team and he is undoubtedly a big boost for us in what we expect will be a very tough match.”
With Wednesday-s match in Manama falling on a non FIFA International date a number of players that featured against Uruguay are unavailable due to club commitments.
The inclusion of Thompson, who finished equal top scorer in the Hyundai A-League with Melbourne Victory this season, sees the squad extended to 19 players.
SQUAD - AUSTRALIA V BAHRAIN
Michael Beauchamp (Central Coast Mariners, Australia), Alex Brosque (Queensland Roar, Australia), David Carney (Sydney FC, Australia), Alvin Ceccoli (Sydney FC, Australia), Ante Covic (Hammarby, Sweden), Spase Dilevski (Queensland Roar, Australia), Ahmad Elrich (Fulham, England), Brett Holman (Excelsior, Holland), Jon McKain (Timosoara Politechnica, Romania), Scott McDonald (Motherwell, Scotland), Jade North (Newcastle Jets, Australia), Michael Petkovic (Sivasspor, Turkey), Josip Skoko (Stoke, England), Michael Thwaite (FC National, Romania), Archie Thompson (PSV Eindhoven, Holland), Michael Valkanis, Adelaide United, Australia), Tony Vidmar (NAC Breda, Holland), Nick Ward (Perth Glory, Australia), Luke Wilkshire (Bristol City, England)
The match will be the first for the Socceroos in official Asian competition, following Australia-s admission to the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) on 1 January this year.
The AFC Asian Cup finals in July of 2007 will feature the top 16 nations emerging from this years qualifiers, which consist of 6 groups of 4 nations playing home and away matches throughout the year. Australia have drawn Bahrain, Kuwait and Lebanon, and must finish in the top two of the group to proceed to the finals.
The AFC Asian Cup 2007 will be jointly hosted by Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia and Vietnam.
Bahrain v Australia Live to all centres on SBS Television Thursday 23 February @ 2:15am AEDT (Check local guides)