We’re putting our necks on the line here! With Bert van Marwijk set to announce his Socceroos squad for friendlies against Norway and Colombia this week, here are our predictions (feel free to rip in).
With every Socceroos camp tactically-vital for van Marwijk, don’t expect a lot of surprises in this squad. More than experimenting, these friendlies give the Socceroos boss a chance to drill his best players into a system, which will carry over to the World Cup.
In short, this isn’t just a friendlies squad, this is the real deal.
Mat Ryan’s the number one, not exactly controversial huh? He’s arguably our most in-form Socceroo and playing at the highest level. Second choice, however, is a little more left field: Brad Jones.
Despite surviving in the wilderness of Socceroos exile, the Feyenoord keeper is one of the most familiar faces in this squad for the Dutch coach, plying his trade for Eredivisie champions Feyenoord. Van Marwijk’s already sounded him out, so his inclusion seems a shoe-in.
Third choice is Danny Vukovic, who’s solid season at Belgian club Genk – earning two fan’s player of the month awards – will see him included, but as third-fiddle to Jones. Ange Postecoglou may have preferred the former Sydney FC man, but Bert will look a little closer to (his) home.
Mitch Langerak and Adam Federici miss out due to lack of game-time this season, while van Marwijk isn't tipped to take any chances by including a bolter like Paul Izzo.