x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Kewell hopeful of being fit for Socceroos opener

Australia winger Harry Kewell is "on track" to recover from a groin injury in time to face Germany in his country's World Cup opener

MELBOURNE // Australia winger Harry Kewell is "on track" to recover from a groin injury in time to face Germany in his country's World Cup opener in South Africa next month. The 31-year-old former Leeds United and Liverpool forward was named in Pim Verbeek's preliminary squad last week but is still struggling with a problem picked up while playing for his Turkish club Galatasaray. "I'm doing all the right things. Nothing's pulling up short. We're working on a schedule and it's all going on track," he told the Australian Associated Press today. "It's important that I am (at 100 per cent)... not only for myself, but for my team as well," he added. "If I can't be 100 per cent, I'm letting myself down and my team and my country as well."

Kewell, who may be asked to play as a lone forward against the Germans in Durban on June 13, will almost certainly miss this week's warm-up against New Zealand. Australia, who reached the first knockout stage at the last World Cup in Germany, also face Serbia and Ghana in first round Group D at the June 11-July 11 tournament. * Reuters