Skip to content

Bert Van Marwijk Has Australia World Cup Squad In Mind

by content

Australia head coach Bert van Marwijk has admitted that he has already noted down a core of players who would be travelling for this summer’s World Cup in Russia. The Dutchman has recently announced a 32-man provisional squad but this is expected to be slashed to 26 ahead of an intense training camp in Turkey. Thereafter, Van Marwijk will be tasked with picking his final 23-man squad for the global tournament.

Speaking to reporters, he said:"I should be lying if I didn't say that maybe in head are 26 or 27 players. Every coach has the same feeling. There are always players you are doubting a little bit, but there's also a lot of players who you're sure." Meanwhile, speaking on the surprise inclusion of Melbourne City teenager Daniel Arzani, he added:“He only just turned 19-years-old, so he has to learn but I like players who can make a difference. Maybe a World Championship is too early for him, but I will not hesitate (if) I think that he can mean something for us.”

Van Marwijk was appointed as the Socceroos head coach in January after his predecessor Ange Postecoglou helped the nation reach the World Cup via the playoffs. Since then, the veteran has not had not had the luxury to scout new players, though the 65-year-old did spring a surprise by selecting uncapped Croatia-based right-back Fran Karacic.

Australia prepare for their World Cup with a three-week training base in Turkey. In this period, they have a couple of friendlies scheduled against the Czech Republic and Hungary and Van Marwijkwill attempt to get his players to the best physical shape possible ahead of their group stage opener against France. Aside from Les Bleus, the Socceroos have to contend with Denmark and Peru in the group and their chances of progressing to the knockouts remain slim.