Qantas Australian Under 23’s Head Coach Aurelio Vidmar has named an 18-player squad for the upcoming 2012 London Olympic Games Men’s Football tournament Asian Qualifier against the United Arab Emirates (UAE) at Hindmarsh Stadium in Adelaide on the 21 September 2011.
Vidmar has selected his squad solely from the ranks of the Hyundai A-League with 13 members who were part of the squad that defeated Yemen 7-0 on aggregate over two legs in the second round of qualifying back in June.
Coming into the squad for the first time for the current campaign are local Adelaide United defender Daniel Mullen, along with Mate Dugandzic (Melbourne Heart), James Brown (Gold Coast United), Rhyan Grant (Sydney FC) and Ben Kantarovski (Newcastle Jets).
Vidmar knows that the opening match against the UAE will set scene for the rest of the qualification campaign.
“Under this competition format, it is very important to get off to a positive start, especially when playing at home,” said Vidmar.
“We will have a good ten days preparation in the lead up to the match which will include a training match against a South Australian select team.
“With all the squad currently in pre-season with their clubs, we are going to have to work hard to ensure that we are match fit by game time.
“But I am confident that the players that have been selected will be up to the challenge and they will be ready for the campaign ahead,” concluded Vidmar.
The kick-off time for the match has also now been amended to 8:00pm ACST and will be broadcast live and exclusive on Fox Sports.
Australian U23 squad for UAE qualifier
Aziz Behich (Melbourne Heart)
Mark Birighitti (gk) (Adelaide United)
Oliver Bozanic (Central Coast Mariners)
James Brown (Gold Coast United)
Kofi Danning (Brisbane Roar)
Mate Dugandzic (Melbourne Heart)
Diogo Ferreira (Melbourne Victory)
Matthew Foschini (Melbourne Victory)
Rhyan Grant (Sydney FC)
Jason Hoffman (Melbourne Heart)
Marko Jesic (Newcastle Jets)
Ben Kantarovski (Newcastle Jets)
Matthew Jurman (Brisbane Roar)
Daniel Mullen (Adelaide United)
Scott Neville (Perth Glory)
Mitch Nichols (Brisbane Roar)
Andrew Redmayne (gk) (Brisbane Roar)
Seb Ryall (Sydney FC)