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Grant in frame for Socceroos' big month

With a huge June beckoning for the Socceroos, uncapped Sydney FC right-back Rhyan Grant would relish another chance in green and gold.

Grant in frame for Socceroos' big month

With a huge June beckoning for the Socceroos, uncapped Sydney FC right-back Rhyan Grant would relish another chance in green and gold.

Nothing could possibly top Rhyan Grant's year - except the chance to be involved in a huge month for the Socceroos.

Playing a part in the best A-League season on record is a career standout for the lively full-back.


Thanks to his speed on Sydney FC's right flank, Grant also ran straight into the national squad for Australia's March World Cup qualifiers against Iraq and United Arab Emirates.

Now, with a big June schedule beckoning for the Socceroos, the uncapped 26-year-old would relish another chance to vie for an international debut.

"It's been a pretty good year for Sydney FC and myself, winning the premiership and championship," Grant said.

"If I was to be selected in the Socceroos it would be even better."

Grant and Sydney goalkeeper Danny Vukovic are both expected to be retained when coach Ange Postecoglou names his extended 30-man squad on Monday, before trimming it to a final 23 the following week.

The form of several other Sky Blues, most notably Alex Wilkinson, has undoubtedly given Postecoglou much to contemplate before a crucial month featuring a must-win World Cup qualifier against Saudi Arabia at Adelaide Oval, a high-profile friendly with Brazil at the MCG and the Confederations Cup in Russia in a group with Germany, Cameroon and Chile.

True to form Postecoglou's sure to throw up a couple of surprises, highlighted by an international tug of war for 20-year-old Dutch-based attacker Ajdin Hrustic, who's also caught the attention of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Many starters though will be regulars, and the Socceroos will welcome back fit-again Celtic playmaker Tom Rogic, fresh from his 11th goal of an injury-interrupted Scottish Premier League campaign.

Aaron Mooy will be first off the rank on the back of his stellar loan season in Huddersfield Town's midfield, where he's steered the English Championship club to within one game of promotion.

Jackson Irvine is another sure thing after building on his debut Socceroos goal against UAE by doing much to keep Burton Albion in the Championship.

Left-back Brad Smith is still struggling for game time at Bournemouth, as is Trent Sainsbury at Internazionale, while fellow central defender Matt Spiranovic got through half a game last weekend with Chinese second-division side Hangzhou Greentown on return from injury.

Having been ruled out of March's qualifiers with a quad issue, Spiranovic recently spent a month in Melbourne regaining fitness with Socceroos physiotherapist Les Gelis.

If Grant learnt one thing from his international squad initiation, it's that the competition is tough.

He'll at least get practice against some of the world's best when Sydney host Liverpool at ANZ Stadium on Wednesday night, when he could face Brazilian stars Philippe Coutinho and Roberto Firmino.

"I don't think I'll ever feel like I belong (in the Socceroos squad), and I'm new to the team so that would take a while," Grant said.

"But I feel like I can compete, which is a stepping stone.

"Now I've had a taste I feel like I can definitely get back in there and have a good crack."

AAP


AAP



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