Ange Postecoglou recently named his 30-man preliminary squad to take on Iraq and the United Arab Emirates in this month’s World Cup qualifiers. The Football Sack has taken a look at four of the players in his Socceroos outfit with deep attachments to Adelaide United.

 

1. Awer Mabil

21-year-old Awer Mabil is an immensely talented attacking midfielder that represented Adelaide United from 2013 until 2015. The club gave his professional career the kick start it needed before he moved to Danish outfit FC Midtjylland at the end of the 2014/2015 season. A fan favourite during his tenure at Coopers Stadium, Mabil was known for his explosive sprints on either wing, particularly against tiring defenders. His coach at the time, Josep Gombau, preferred to use him as a second-half substitute, and often he was Adelaide’s x-factor in deadlocked games.

Now playing on loan at Esbjerg fB, he has buried three goals with six assists in his time with the Danish Superliga club, and is in with a red hot chance to make his senior international debut in the upcoming fixtures.

 

2. Jimmy Jeggo

Joining Adelaide from fierce rivals Melbourne Victory in 2014, Jimmy Jeggo’s career was rebuilt during his two seasons at Coopers Stadium. As a holding midfielder Jeggo developed a reputation as a cool-headed player who was happy to sit back and help his side build from the back. After being a regular started in Adelaide’s triumphant 2015/2016 season, he was sold to Sturm Graz in the Austrian Bundesliga where he has already made 15 starts this season.

Jeggo may not be first in line for a spot in the Socceroos midfield, but the 25-year-old is doing nothing wrong as far as Postecoglou is concerned, and will almost certainly be seen in green and gold before too long.

 

3. Craig Goodwin

Adelaide-born Craig Goodwin’s youth career started in his home city, before professional opportunities took him to Melbourne Heart and then Newcastle Jets from 2012-2014. He returned home after signing for Adelaide United in 2014 under Josep Gombau, and his potential was fully realised.

His tenacity on the wings of Coopers Stadium quickly saw him become a fan favourite, particularly when creeping forward. In doing this, he bagged ten goals in 55 appearances for the Reds; an excellent record for a midfielder. His role in Adelaide’s double in 2015/2016 garnered the attention of overseas scouts, and he was eventually bought by Dutch outfit Sparta Rotterdam where he has scored two goals in ten appearances. He will be looking to add to his three International caps.

 

4. Riley McGree

The real bolter in Postecoglou’s squad, 18-year-old Riley McGree will have many fans scratching their heads and asking: ‘Riley who?’

But those who have seen McGree’s stunning performances for Adelaide United in his maiden professional football season will hardly be surprised that international opportunities are coming for the young attacking midfielder. Earlier this year he told The Football Sack exclusively that a Socceroos kit was his main goal, and while it is unlikely to happen in the upcoming fixtures, he has done everything he can to put himself on the national radar. Quick, aggressive and skilful, the McGree name is one that will likely pop up in many a future Socceroos squad.

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