Sydney FC defender called into Socceroos squad as two stars ruled out through injury

Sydney FC full-back Joel King has earned a Socceroos recall, coming into Graham Arnold’s squad after injuries to Jordan Bos and Riley McGree.

King, 23, joins head coach Graham Arnold’s squad ahead of the second of two 2026 World Cup qualifiers against Lebanon in the current international window.

The Socceroos defeated Lebanon 2-0 at CommBank Stadium on Thursday night – a game in which both Bos and McGree succumbed to first-half injuries. Both players will return to their clubs (Bos to KVC Westerlo, McGree to Middlesbrough) to be reviewed by club medical staff, with timelines for their respective returns yet to be set.

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Attention now turns to Tuesday night’s clash with Lebanon at GIO Stadium in Canberra (7.45pm AEDT kick-off). Football Australia confirmed King’s call-up as well as providing a boost to Arnold’s attacking stocks, with Craig Goodwin recovering from a virus in time to contend for selection.

King has made four Socceroos appearances to date, and joins fellow A-Leagues stars Josh Nisbet, Brandon Borrello, Adam Taggart and Bruno Fornaroli in Arnold’s current 26-player squad.

Keanu Baccus, goalscorer against Lebanon on Thursday, will miss Tuesday’s game in Canberra after picking up his second yellow card of qualification.

The Socceroos hold a commanding lead in Group I in second-round AFC World Cup qualifying on nine points after three games. Palestine are second on four points ahead of Lebanon (two points) and Bangladesh (one point).

Match details – Olympic Qualifier

Lebanon v Subway Socceroos
Date: Tuesday, 26 March 2024
Venue: GIO Stadium, Canberra
Kick-off: 7.45pm AEDT
Broadcast: 10 Bold, 10 Play and Paramount+

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