Aussies Need Fully Fit Jedinak To Combat The Best


When Australia were drawn into ‘Group B’ alongside current European and World Cup champions Spain, 2010 runners up Netherlands and exciting South Americans Chile, many would have written off the Aussies and labelled them the groups whipping boys.

But Australian captain Mile Jedinak will have heard that all before with Crystal Palace last season. Jedinak and his club-mates managed to prove the doubters wrong and didn’t just stay up in the English Premier League, they did it in some style.

Along with Palace goalkeeper Julian Speroni, Jedinak was one of the clubs top performers and was consistently good and reliable in the heart of midfield.

If Australia stand any chance of doing well at this summers World Cup, then they will need their captain to bring his ‘A’ game and continue having the best season of his career.

Against their mighty opponents, Mile will need to stand in front of his defence and marshall and patrol in front of them. He will have to get in about star opposition players like Wesley Sneijder, Andres Iniesta, David Silva and Alexis Sanchez. He will have to get in their faces and shackle them with stiff fair challenges.

The twenty-nine year old will have to break up play and then get the ball moving to the creative players like Tim Cahill or Mark Bresciano. He was very successful at doing that with Crystal Palace this term, making on average more than three tackles per game and about 3.7 interceptions per game too. While his passing success rate was around the 70% mark.

The six foot two middleman is also great in the air which is a bonus in terms of intercepting balls that go over the top. His keen aerial ability also gives the ‘Socceroos’ an advantage when defending and attacking set-pieces.

His experience will also be valuable for the Australians who have quite a few players in their early twenties. Players like Jedinak, Cahill, Bresciano and Matt McKay will have to help settle the younger players nerves when they step up against three teams in the top fifteen of FIFA’s World Rankings.

Unfortunately for Australian number fifteen Jedinak and the Aussies, the forty-four times capped central midfielder picked up a groin injury during Palace’s last game of the season. He will hopefully be fully fit for the Chile tie on Friday the 13th of June. He did manage to complete seventy-five minutes against Croatia in a recent friendly. But any problems with the groin would mean that Mile would be restricted in his movement and he needs to be able to cover the ground when the better sides have the ball, which they will for the most part of games.

Obviously it’s going to be nigh on impossible for the Socceroos to get through this tough, tough group but Jedinak and his mates could go along way in deciding who does get into the second round.

I would love them to get at least one shock result, preferably against the mighty Spain, and for Mile Jedinak to show once again that he is a rough diamond who deserves more acclaim.

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