FFA stands firm on Antonis ruling

Football Federation Australia has stood it's ground on young Sydney star Terry Antonis, saying the influential midfielder is ineligible to play in Saturday’s Big Blue.

Antonis was supposed to be in Osaka with the Socceroos this week but was forced to pull out after being involved in a minor car accident on the way to the airport.

After initial concussion fears, Sky Blues coach Graham Arnold argued Antonis was fit and should be allowed to line up against Melbourne Victory.

But FFA released a statement in the wake of Arnold’s criticism saying in accordance with its statutes “players selected for international duty who are subsequently withdrawn due to injury or illness cannot play for their club during the period for which the player should have been released.

“Therefore, FFA confirms that Terry Antonis is ineligible to play for Sydney FC against Melbourne Victory this Saturday.”

Arnold said it was the Socceroos staff who opted to withdraw the player from the squad to face Japan and therefore the club should be allowed to select him for the weekend clash.