Kennedy, Williams named in Australia squad
Australia coach Ange Postecoglou offered plenty of international hopefuls every chance of earning a berth at the Asian Cup by announcing an extended 46-man squad a month out from the tournament on Monday.
There were no major absentees from the group, which consists of every member of Australia's final 2014 World Cup squad and the majority of the players who have since featured in friendlies under Postecoglou.
Bailey Wright, Adam Taggart, Rhys Williams and Josh Kennedy were included despite battling injuries in recent months, with Celtic's Tom Rogic one of the few overlooked.
"I'm happy with the depth of squad we have been able to name and it is now up to these 46 guys to ensure they are selected in the final squad for the Asian Cup and rise to the challenge ahead," Postecoglou said in a statement released on Football Federation Australia's website.
"We have set about trying to broaden the depth of players and I'm happy with how that has transpired over the last five matches since the World Cup. We have a good group of players to choose from for what will be an exciting time for Australian football.
"We still have three or four weeks before we finalise the squad so there is opportunity for all 46 players to push their claims for inclusion in the final list of 23."
Long-term injury victims Williams and Kennedy in particular will raise eyebrows with their inclusion in the long list.
"Josh... and Rhys missed the World Cup through injury so it is nice to be able to select them in the provisional squad and there is no doubt their proven international record will give us a boost if they are named in the final squad of 23," Postecoglou said.
Four players yet to be capped at senior level, Luke Brattan, Mustafa Amini, Daniel De Silva and Josh Risdon, were among those named.
The final squad of 23 players must be submitted to the Asian Football Confederation by December 30, while injury replacements can be named prior to the tournament's start from the original extended squad.
Australia squad in full:
Goalkeepers: Adam Federici, Eugene Galekovic, Brad Jones, Mitchell Langerak, Mat Ryan
Defenders: Aziz Behich, Jason Davidson, Ivan Franjic, Chris Herd, Ryan McGowan, Josh Risdon, Trent Sainsbury, Brad Smith, Matthew Spiranovic, Nikolai Topor-Stanley, James Troisi, Alex Wilkinson, Rhys Williams, Bailey Wright
Midfielders: Mustafa Amini, Terry Antonis, Oliver Bozanic, Luke Brattan, Mark Bresciano, Joshua Brillante, Daniel De Silva, Ben Halloran, James Holland, Mile Jedinak, Robbie Kruse, Massimo Luongo, Matt McKay, Mark Milligan, Aaron Mooy, Mitch Nichols, Carl Valeri, Dario Vidosic
Forwards: Nathan Burns, Tim Cahill, Bernie Ibini-Isei, Tomi Juric, Josh Kennedy, Mathew Leckie, Tommy Oar, Nikita Rukavytsya, Adam Taggart