Van Marwijk springs Karacic surprise in Socceroos squad

Van Marwijk springs Karacic surprise in Socceroos squad

Van Marwijk springs Karacic surprise in Socceroos squad

BC-SOC-WCup-Australia Squad, 2nd Ld-Writethru, 564World Cup: Cahill makes Australia's provisional squadAP Photo TKMY101, XRR104, XRR101, XRR103, XRR102Eds: Adds quotes.

The Dutchman, who led the Netherlands to the 2010 World Cup final, otherwise found space for all the usual suspects in his 32-man party, which he will cut down to 23 before the Federation Internationale de Football Association deadline on June 4.

Australia coach Bert van Marwijk sprung a minor surprise by including uncapped Croatia-based defender Fran Karacic in his preliminary World Cup squad on Monday.

His last club goal came for Melbourne City more than a year ago, though his brace against Syria in October saved Australia's World Cup hopes and booked the successful playoff berth against Honduras.

Socceroos coach Bert van Marwijk has looked to ensure Arzani's future lies with Australia by naming him in his initial squad, which will be whittled down to 23 players by the eve of the World Cup in Russian Federation.

The 26 man squad will travel to Turkey for pre-tournament training camp and then play friendlies in Austria and Hungary.

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The 38-year-old Cahill is Australia's all-time leading scorer with 50 goals from 105 global appearances, but he has struggled for form and match time in recent months.

"Before March he didn't play every week", Van Marwijk said.

"I had a long converstaion with Tim in Norway", Van Marwijk said. "He is 38 and maybe one of the best-ever players for Australia".

"He (Cahill) doesn't play much; maybe 5 or 10 or 20 minutes". I have to take a decision if I take him to the world championships.

"He is not 19 like (Daniel) Arzani - he's twice as old - but is also a player who can make a difference".

Arzani, who is regarded as one of Australia's brightest young prospects after helping Melbourne City win the A-League, also made the provisional squad. The teenage winger, who is also eligible to play for Iran, could become the youngest Australian to play at a World Cup if he makes the final cut.

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Karacic's first chance to impress wearing green and gold - if he makes the culled squad - will be when the Socceroos face the Czech Republic in a friendly on June 2. Karacic holds an Australian passport, although he's never actually visited the country before.

Croatian-born 21-year-old right-back Fran Karacic is the shock selection while established core Mile Jedinak, Aaron Mooy, Mat Ryan, Mathew Leckie, Robbie Kruse, Massimo Luongo and Tomi Juric have all been retained.

"Everybody knows that the right defending position, I don't have a lot of choices".

"Nobody told me not to nominate him because of this, but I hope that when we are nominating him he will play for Australia", he said.

Goalkeepers: Mat Ryan (Brighton), Brad Jones (Feyenoord), Danny Vukovic (Genk), Mitchell Langerak (Nagoya Grampus).

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