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Milligan's cause for pregnant pause

AAP logoAAP 7/09/2016 Ben McKay

Mile Jedinak's injury wasn't the only selection dilemma facing the Socceroos against United Arab Emirates this week.

While Jedinak missed the match with a possible foot or ankle injury, Mark Milligan - his replacement as skipper and in midfield - had plenty on his mind as well.

Milligan's wife Rhia is due to give birth to the couple's third child but attended the Socceroos' 1-0 triumph on Tuesday night.

"She'd been in hospital in the morning but she wanted to do it even though she's having slight contractions," Milligan said.

"I told her she'd be more comfortable at home but she insisted. It was just good she didn't give birth today."

If the timing of the match was unfortunate for the Milligans, the venue was not.

Milligan plays his club football in Abu Dhabi, meaning the match was a short trip across town.

The 31-year-old midfielder said they'd devised a plan to manage the birth amid national team commitments.

"We knew we'd be in this situation before the camp," he said.

"I was fortunate enough to come home a little early after the Iraq game to spend the day with her, to make sure she's alright.

"It was a bit tough that she was over here on her own but she's a tough cookie."

Given Tim Cahill's scoring heroics, Milligan briefly considered naming baby number three after the veteran striker.

"If it was a boy I would call it Timmy but I'm confident it's not," he laughed.

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