Sydney FC Duo In Final Olympic Qualifiers


Sydney FC stars Andrew Hoole and Alex Gersbach have been called up to the Olyroos squad for the AFC U-23 Championship in Doha next month.

Head Coach Aurelio Vidmar has named a 23-man squad for the tournament in Qatar from 14-30 January, which is the final round of qualifying for the 2016 Olympic Games.

It’s the first time Gersbach has been selected in the Olyroos squad which improves his chances of representing his country at the 2016 Olympics in Brazil.

“Obviously representing Australia at the Olympics would be a huge honour for me,” said the 18 year old.

“First we need to perform well at this tournament and qualify, while on a personal level I will need to prove my worth to the coach as we have a strong squad.

“However I’ve no doubt we will go to Qatar with plenty of confidence.”

Added to the inclusions of Hoole and Gersbach is former Sydney FC midfielder Terry Antonis as well as fellow Socceroos Chris Ikonomidis, Josh Brillante and Adam Taggart.

The also includes overseas-based starlets Daniel de Silva and Mustafa Amini as well as 12 players from the Hyundai A-League.

Defending Hyundai A-League Champions/Premiers Melbourne Victory has five players in the squad with the selection of Thomas Deng, Giancarlo Gallifuoco, Scott Galloway, Jason Geria and Connor Pain testament to the pathway created by Victory coach Kevin Muscat.

Brisbane Roar trio Brandon Borrello, James Donachie and Jamie Maclaren will be joined Paul Izzo from Central Coast Mariners and Melbourne City’s Stefan Mauk.

“We have put together an exciting squad that includes some players with Socceroos experience and also illustrates the strength of the Hyundai A-League and its position as a true pathway for national team footballers,” Vidmar said.

“The squad contains 12 players from our national competition and the A-League clubs and coaches should be congratulated for the part they play in developing these players.

“We have taken the group through an important journey with qualifying, camps and friendly matches but this is a step up in class that they have to take in their development as international football players.

“We head to Qatar for a tough tournament but we have a good group of players and we’re confident we can qualify for the Olympic Games.”

The Olyroos will head to Dubai for a seven day camp before the opening match in Group D against the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on 14 January at the Grand Hamad Stadium. The Olyroos also play Vietnam (17 January) and Jordan (20 January) with the top two teams progressing to the quarter finals.

The top three teams will qualify for the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games Football Tournament.

Sydney FC take on the Central Coast Mariners at Allianz Stadium on Boxing Day (kick off 7:30pm). Continue the festive cheer with an evening of football, tickets are still available.


Olyroos squad for the AFC U-23 Championship Doha 2016 in Qatar

Mustafa AMINI – 20-04-93 – Randers FC, Denmark

Terry ANTONIS – 26-11-93 – PAOK, Greece

Brandon BORRELLO – 25-07-95 – Brisbane Roar FC

Josh BRILLANTE – 25-03-93 – Calcio Como, Italy

Cameron BURGESS – 21-10-95 – Fulham FC, England

Daniel DE SILVA – 06-03-97 – Roda JC Kerkrade, Holland

Thomas DENG – 03-20-97 – Melbourne Victory FC

James DONACHIE – 14-05-93 – Brisbane Roar FC

Jack DUNCAN – 19-04-93 – Randers FC, Denmark

Ryan EDWARDS – 17-11-93 – Partick Thistle, Scotland

Giancarlo GALLIFUOCO – 12-01-94 – Melbourne Victory FC

Scott GALLOWAY – 25-04-95 – Melbourne Victory FC

Jason GERIA – 10-05-93 – Melbourne Victory FC

Alex GERSBACH – 08-05-97 – Sydney FC

Andrew HOOLE – 22-10-93 – Sydney FC

Christopher IKONOMIDIS – 04-05-95 – SS Lazio, Italy

Paul IZZO – 06-01-95 – Central Coast Mariners

Aaron LENNOX – 19-02-93 – Kilmarnock FC, Scotland

Jamie MACLAREN – 29-07-93 – Brisbane Roar FC

Stefan MAUK – 22-10-95 – Melbourne City FC

Connor PAIN – 11-11-93 – Melbourne Victory FC

Adam TAGGART – 02-06-93 – Dundee United FC, Scotland

Steven UGARKOVIC – 19-08-94 – Uncontracted


Match Details

Australia v UAE

14 January 2016

Grand Hamad Stadium

7.30pm (3.30am 15 January AEDT)


Vietnam v Australia

17 January 2016

Grand Hamad Stadium

4.30pm (12.30am 18 January AEDT)


Jordan v Australia

20 January 2016

Suhaim Bin Hamad Stadium

7.30pm (3.30am 15 January AEDT)


Possible quarter final – 23 January 2016

Possible semi final – 26 January 2016

Possible 3rd/4th playoff – 29 January 2016

Possible Final – 30 January 2016