Culina to sit out Gold Coast’s clash with North Queensland Fury

Gold Coast United captain Jason Culina has withdrawn from tonight’s meeting with North Queensland Fury at Skilled Park.

The star midfielder has succumbed to an ongoing knee problem and will bypass the midweek fixture in the hope that he will be ready to take on Melbourne Heart on Sunday.

It is another blow to United coach Miron Bleiberg who is already battling with a number of injuries and suspensions to key players but he insists that it will benefit the squad as a whole as it gives a great opportunity to some youngsters including Josh Brillante, Ben Halloran and Zach Anderson.

“It's annoying but there's also an element of excitement," Bleiberg said.

"Zach played some games last season but he hasn't had an opportunity yet. I would have no hesitation sending him on.

"He's a strong, very intelligent boy with a lot of leadership qualities."

Third-placed Gold Coast host the bottom-placed Fury tonight – kick-off is at 8:00pm local time (9:00pm AEDT).

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