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Five A-League midfielders for Brazil

aleague_mfThe Socceroos midfield is filled with staggering quality. Bresciano has just recently been cleared to play in Brazil, and Mark Milligan and Mile Jedinak have never looked sharper in the Australian set up than they do with Postecoglou.

This leaves little room for any A-League hopefuls, which is unfortunate due to the rich potential of many of our domestic midfielders. However, Ange has stated publicly that he will give anyone a chance if their form warrants it.

So, due to recent good form, we have comprised a list of five A-League midfielders who we think deserve a chance in the green and gold. It is probable that at least one of the following players will get the chance to impress in the international friendlies before Brazil, although it is hard to say for certain due to Postecoglou’s elusive nature.

It is worth noting that the following list does not consist of players already established in the national set up, such as Mark Milligan and Matt McKay.

1. Tom Rogic (Melbourne Victory)

Victory fans have had little time to mourn Mitch Nichols departure to J-League outfit Cerezo Osaka, with replacement Tom Rogic slotting in splendidly in Victory’s attacking lineup. Each match he plays for the Victory he grows in confidence, and with the return of Mark Milligan into the squad, Melbourne are likely to bounce back from poor form and make a strong run into the finals. Rogic’s skill and composure on the ball are his best assets, and will benefit the Socceroos immensely in Brazil. Barring injury or lack of match fitness, Rogic will almost certainly be on the plane to Brazil.

2. Luke Brattan (Brisbane Roar)

Luke Brattan is one of the most under-estimated players in the A-League. He hasn’t missed a game this season, and is one of the reasons that Roar are strong favourites to win the Premier’s Plate with 9 rounds to go. Brattan is one third of Brisbane’s dominating midfield. His work-rate and assurance remind us of a young Mark Milligan, able to get forward and attack though always secure in his defensive duties. His technical ability is also noteworthy; a player who would slot into any J-League squad with ease. Unfortunately, it may take a move abroad for the 23 year old’s international career to begin, but he is certainly one to watch in the years to come.

3. Aaron Mooy (Western Sydney)

Aaron Mooy has been labelled as a future Socceroo by many. He has played successfully in Scotland, and shows all the right signs of progressing through Western Sydney to bigger and better clubs. However, the Wanderers style of play may not appeal to Postecoglou. They aren’t the type of team to dominate matches with possession, so something has to be asked of the ability of Aaron Mooy to dominate and control the flow of games. Despite this, his defensive work and versatility in the midfield places him at number 3 on our list, and his potential move to Melbourne Heart at the end of the year may give him the game time and development needed to excel his career further.

4. Joshua Brillante (Newcastle Jets)

Brillante was one of the standout performers at the Under 20’s World Cup in Turkey. He is a regular for the Newcastle Jets, and often lights up the A-League stage with his hard tackling, tireless work rate and overall performances which continue to improve. Brillante’s biggest concern is consistency. He plays in a young Jets squad, and will often stand-out one week, then be ineffective the next. Brillante would benefit immensely from a spot in Brazil, though game time is highly unlikely. His experiences at the Under-22 Asian Cup will add to his confidence, but if he is to have any chance of making the World Cup squad, he will need to ensure Newcastle make the A-League top 6 comes finals time. A lack of game time leading into the World Cup will damage his chances of selection.

5. Vince Lia (Wellington Phoenix)

Perhaps a wildcard entry, Vince Lia has suprised everyone with his dominance in Wellington’s revived midfield this season. He has never looked sharper under the guidance of Ernie Merrick, who seems to be the best coach for the 28 year old, who has represented Australia at youth level in the past. Merrick and Lia were first acquainted at Melbourne Victory in 2005, when Merrick discovered Lia’s talents and gave him a first team contract in the inaugural A-League season. Lia is now a strong ball player, and a very hard, defensive-minded midfielder who has excelled under Merrick since the departure of Ricki Herbert. If his form continues, he may catch the eye of Postecoglou for the upcoming friendlies in June, but like Brillante, is unlikely to feature in Brazil.

What do you make of those five players? Are they likely to be on the plane to Brazil? Or are there other A-League midfielders who should be up for consideration? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

Also, check out the first article in this series – Five A-League defenders for Brazil.

About the author

avatarJames is a devout Melbourne Victory fan and a UQ Journalism student, writing for Ultimate A-League.

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  • death to vince lia

    if vinnie lia makes it to the world cup ill bare my ass at the maracana

  • Ultimate A-League

    While, as James said, it’s unlikely that he will make it, we’ll hold you to that bet :)