SYDNEY, Oct 31 (Reuters) - Australia captain Mile Jedinak was, as expected, named in Ange Postecoglou’s 25-man squad for next week’s World Cup playoff against Honduras on Tuesday.
The 33-year-old midfielder has been hampered by a groin injury for months and missed both legs of Australia’s Asian playoff against Syria earlier this month.
Jedinak came on for the last half-hour of Aston Villa’s 0-0 draw in the Championship derby against Birmingham City at the weekend, his first appearance since Sept. 12.
There were no surprises in the squad with midfielder Mark Milligan and Mathew Leckie included despite both being suspended for the first leg.
Goalkeeper Mark Birighitti and outfield players Mustafa Amini, Awer Mabil, Jamie Maclaren and Ajdin Hrustic were cut from the extended squad Postecoglou named last week.
The first leg of the tie takes place in San Pedro Sula, Honduras on Nov. 10 with the return match in Sydney on Nov. 15. The aggregate winners earn a spot at the finals in Russia next year.
“It has been pleasing to see so many of our players performing strongly for their clubs domestically and abroad, and I believe that puts us in good stead for our upcoming play-off matches,” Postecoglou said in a statement.
“With two games in five days and extensive travel between the fixtures, every member of our squad will play an important role this November.
“We’ll be looking to get positive result in San Pedro Sula, before aiming to seal a place at the 2018 World Cup in front of our home fans in Sydney.”
Goalkeepers: Mitchell Langerak (Levante, Spain), Mat Ryan (Brighton, England), Danny Vukovic (Genk, Belgium).
Defenders: Josh Risdon (Western Sydney Wanderers), Aziz Behich (Bursaspor, Turkey), Milos Degenek (Yokohama Marinos, Japan), Alex Gersbach (Rosenborg, Norway), Craig Goodwin (Sparta Rotterdam, Netherlands), Matthew Jurman (Suwon, South Korea), Ryan McGowan (Al Sharjah, UAE), Trent Sainsbury (Jiangsu Suning, China), Bailey Wright (Bristol City, England).
Midfielders: Jackson Irvine (Hull City, England), Mile Jedinak (Aston Villa, England), James Jeggo (Sturm Graz, Austria), Massimo Luongo (QPR, England), Mark Milligan (Melbourne Victory), Aaron Mooy (Huddersfield Town, England), Tom Rogic (Celtic, Scotland), James Troisi (Melbourne Victory).
Forwards: Tim Cahill (Melbourne City), Tom Juric (Luzern, Switzerland), Robbie Kruse (Bochum, Germany), Mathew Leckie (Hertha Berlin, Germany), Nikita Rukavytsya (Maccabi Haifa, Israel). (Reporting by Nick Mulvenney; Editing by Ian Ransom)