Young Socceroos coach Paul Okon has named a 23-player squad for a series of upcoming international friendly matches in New Zealand.
After missing out on this year’s U-20 World Cup in New Zealand, Okon is hoping to get a head start on preparations for the AFC U-19 Championship 2016 Qualifiers and the next World Cup.
The qualifiers will be held from September 28 to October 6 this year.
“The majority of the squad that we have selected are born in 1997 compared to our opposition who are born in 1995 to compete at the 2015 FIFA U-20 World Cup,” Okon said.
“It’s important for us to play as many international matches against quality opposition for us to improve and give us a head start for qualifying for the next U20 World Cup.
“This is an ideal chance for this group of players to impress and show that they are capable of performing at international standard.
“A number of players from the Hyundai A-League were not considered for this tour due to the upcoming Finals Series, but they will definitely be considered for future matches.”
The Young Socceroos will face off against teams that have qualified for this year’s U-20 showpiece tournament.
First up is New Zealand at Mount Smart Stadium in Auckland on Sunday May 3 followed by Qatar at the same venue on Thursday May 7.
They will then meet Panama at the Waikato Stadium, Hamilton on Sunday May 10 before their final match of the series against Ghana on Wednesday May 13 at the same venue.
Daniel ALESSI (Western Sydney Wanderers FC, Australia), Daniel ARZANI (FFA Centre of Excellence), George BLACKWOOD (Sydney FC), Jesse DALEY (Brisbane Roar), Shayne D'CUNHA (Western Sydney Wanderers), Daniel DE SILVA (Perth Glory), Thomas DENG (Melbourne Victory), Lucas DERRICK (Melbourne Victory), Alusine FOFANAH (Western Sydney Wanderers), Perry FOTAKOPOULOS (FFA Centre of Excellence), Tom GLOVER (gk, Tottenham Hotspur, England), Thomas HEWARD-BELLE (gk, Western Sydney Wanderers), Jordan HOLMES (gk, AFC Bournemouth, England), Lachlan HUGHES (Sutherland Sharks, Australia), Anthony KALIK (Central Coast Mariners), Steve KUZMANOVSKI (Western Sydney Wanderers ), Jordan LAMPARD (Brisbane Roar), Charles LOKOLI NGOY (Sutherland Sharks, Australia). Benjamin LYVIDIKOS (Brisbane Roar), Liam McGING (Sydney United 58, Australia), Liam ROSE (Central Coast Mariners), Riley WOODCOCK (Perth Glory), Liam YOULLEY (Western Sydney Wanderers ).comments