When Socceroos boss Graham Arnold named his squad for the upcoming World Cup qualifying matches, two big omissions raised a few eyebrows among fans being playmakers Aaron Mooy and Tom Rogic.
With nearly 100 caps between the pair, they have proved vital in the middle of the park for the Socceroos in recent years.
One man who Graham Arnold has revealed will be filling that void in the attacking midfield position is Ajdin Hrustic, a player who has enjoyed a stellar first season with Eintracht Frankfurt in the Bundesliga.
He has been a member of the Socceroos set up since 2017 after turning down the chance to represent Bosnia and Herzegovina, but with only 3 caps to his name this will be his first time to really show Australian fans what he has to offer.
“Ajdin has come in, from my view a completely different player than what he was the last time we saw him when he was in Holland.
“He’s at a great club in Germany, He’s doing exceptionally well.”
When asked if Hrustic would be the main man in the middle of the park for Australia in their upcoming Group Stage matches, Arnold said “We can be open and transparent with that, 100 percent.”
With what will seemingly be a new-look Socceroos side, from the last time they played all the way back in November 2019, Hrustic does not look be alone in the midfield shake up, with Birmingham City midfielder Riley McGree, Melbourne City’s Connor Metcalfe, Macarthur Bull’s Denis Genreau and Blackpool’s promotion play-off hero Kenny Dougall all vying to win their first caps for their country.
James Holland has also been rewarded for his fine form in Austria with LASK Linz with his first call up to the national team since 2014.
While Hrustic will be the main man in midfield for Australia, manager Graham Arnold has spoken about his sides enormous depth and real talent across the whole of midfield.
This provides him with the ability to change his tactics and game plan accordingly and with ease, with many players able to play multiple roles in the middle of the park.
“We’ve got some great depth in those positions, Riley McGree is here as well, and Jackson Irvine, so we’ve got players who can play in those roles and the best part about it is we can be flexible with our tactics and team structure.”
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