Aussie trio on the brink of Wembley showdown

A Wembley showdown between three Aussies is looking more likely after the first legs of the League One play-offs on Friday morning.

Massimo Luongo’s Swindon Town and Preston North End – home of Bailey Wright and Neil Kilkenny – both secured huge wins away from home.

It means if both of their sides avoid defeat at home in next week’s second legs, the two sides will go head-to-head at Wembley later this month for promotion to the English Championship.

Luongo’s Swindon did it the hard way against Sheffield United, going behind early on at Bramall Lane and then missing a penalty midway through the first half.

But the Robins wouldn’t be denied after the break, equalising early in the second half before Luongo set up Nathan Byrne’s stoppage-time winner.

The positive result will come as a relief to the Socceroos midfielder, who admitted on the eve of the clash that speculation over his future had been affecting him.

Luongo is being linked with a summer move to EPL club Aston Villa.

"The speculation has all been playing on my mind a little bit and I just have to force myself not to worry about it," Luongo told Here is the City Sport.

"I need to fully focus on Swindon and do my bit to get us promoted. It has all been a distraction. I do my best not to think about it but it’s human nature to ponder over these things and think about the future.

“Some fans have been criticising me a bit for my performances but I always do my best.”

For Preston, Wright played the full match as Jermaine Beckford’s early goal gave them a 1-0 win at Chesterfield.

The Socceroos defender copped a knock midway through the first half but shrugged it off to play a key role in his club’s first-ever away win in the play-offs.

Kilkenny came on with 11 minutes left.