Qantas Young Socceroos Head Coach Jan Versleijen has announced his 21-player squad that will represent Australia at the FIFA U-20 World Cup Colombia 2011 which will be played from 29 July to 20 August.
Sixteen members of current squad were part of the Qantas Young Socceroos squad that were runner’s up to DPR Korea at the AFC U-19 Championships last year, whilst a further five of those members, Tommy Oar, Kofi Danning, Ben Kantarovski, Rhyan Grant and Sam Gallagher, were also part of the Australian squad that competed at the FIFA U-20 World Cup Egypt 2009.
Fifteen players have been drawn from the ranks of the Hyundai A-League, with four from overseas clubs and two players, former Sunderland striker Matthew Fletcher and former Sheffield United goalkeeper Lawrence Thomas, currently uncontracted.
After a long and exhaustive selection process, Versleijen believes that the squad he has selected will be ready to perform when the tournament begins at the end of the month.
“I am very happy with the final selection and it is good to have the majority of the squad back together that did so well at the AFC Championships last year,” said Versleijen.
“It is also good to see that since last October the majority of the players have progressed to the starting line-ups of their respective Hyundai A-League or overseas based clubs.
“It is very exciting that the tournament is so close and we will use our training camp in Denver, where we will play two friendly matches against quality opposition, to finalise our preparations,” concluded Versleijen.
Qantas Young Socceroos Squad for FIFA U-20 World Cup Colombia 2011
Matthew Action (gk) (Brisbane Roar)
Mustafa Amini (Central Coast Mariners)
Terry Antonis (Sydney FC)
Jake Barker-Dish (Gold Coast United)
Mark Birighitti (gk) (Adelaide United)
Kerem Bulut (Mlada Boleslav, Czech Republic)
Kofi Danning (Brisbane Roar)
Matthew Fletcher (uncontracted)
Petar Franjic (Melbourne Victory)
Sam Gallagher (Central Coast Mariners)
Rhyan Grant (Sydney FC)
Brendan Hamill (Melbourne Heart)
Bernie Ibini-Isei (Central Coast Mariners)
Ben Kantarovski (Newcastle Jets)
Mathew Leckie (Borussia Monchengladbach, Germany)
Dylan McGowan (Gold Coast United)
Tommy Oar (FC Utrecht, Holland)
Dimitrios Petratos (Sydney FC)
Trent Sainsbury (Central Coast Mariners)
Lawrence Thomas (gk) (uncontracted)
Marc Warren (Sheffield United, England)
Australia take on Ecuador, Costa Rica and Spain in Group C of the tournament with their opening match against Ecuador on July 31.