Arnold this afternoon confirmed that Viduka had indeed told him of his decision to retire from international football in two phone calls over four days, but had reversed his decision in a third call just yesterday afternoon.

Describing it as “great news”, Arnold also admitted he was “saddened and disappointed” when he had taken Viduka’s initial calls. He was also clear to state that he did not need to convince Viduka to continue playing, and that the final decision was the player’s alone.

While tiredness was an issue, Arnold also said that Viduka felt compelled to join his new club Newcastle United in pre-season training.

“There were numerous issues and one was Newcastle. He has to settle in to a new club, players and environment. These guys are showing a huge commitment to Australia by missing a whole pre-season with their club. Most of our players play in Europe and miss a lot to go to the Asian Cup,” he said.

“I want people that are 110 per cent committed to the cause.”

Viduka remains as the leading candidate to wear the captain’s armband in the tournament but it a decision that will not be fully made until the team meets to begin preparations in Singapore on June 21.

Arnold said, "Mark was World Cup captain and I don’t see any reason to change it.”

Viduka’s long-term involvement with the national side (post-Asian Cup) has not yet been decided but Arnold is hopeful that the striker will continue to be an important player for the Socceroos until the 2010 World Cup.

Meanwhile, John Aloisi is likely to be given an extra week’s rest as he doesn’t finish his commitment playing for Spanish side Alaves until after this weekend.