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Hrustic in Socceroos squad for WCup qualifier, Confed Cup

Associated Press logo Associated Press 30/05/2017

SYDNEY — Australia has included 20-year-old winger Ajdin Hrustic in its 23-man squad for a World Cup qualifier in June and the Confederations Cup in Russia, getting ahead in a selection tussle with Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Australia-born Hrustic has been the subject of a tug-of-war with his father's native country Bosnia and Herzegovina. Hrustic left Australia as a young teen, moving to Austria in 2012 before joining Schalke in the Bundesliga, then Dutch club Groningen, where he now plays.

Hrustic joined Adelaide United defender Dylan McGowan and Sydney FC goalkeeper Danny Vukovic as uncapped players in the Socceroos' squad announced on Wednesday.

Australia's first match is a World Cup qualifier on June 8 against Saudi Arabia in Adelaide before a friendly against Brazil in Melbourne on June 13.

The Socceroos then travel to Russia for the Confederations Cup, which it qualified for by winning the 2015 Asian Cup.

"The next four weeks will be crucial in our quest to not only qualify for the 2018 World Cup but to make an impact when we get there," Australia coach Ange Postecoglou said.

Postecoglou said trimming the initial 30-man squad by seven players was tough "but that is a good sign of the strength of the squad and the depth we have been able to cultivate over the last three years."

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Australia: Aziz Behich, Tim Cahill, Milos Degenek, Ajdin Hrustic, Jackson Irvine, Mile Jedinak, Tomi Juric, Robbie Kruse, Mitchell Langerak, Mathew Leckie, Massimo Luongo, Jamie McLaren, Dylan McGowan, Ryan McGowan, Mark Milligan, Aaron Mooy, Tom Rogic, Mathew Ryan, Trent Sainsbury, Brad Smith, James Troisi, Daniel Vukovic, Bailey Wright.

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