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Australian Football: Duo out of UAE clash

The Socceroos have been hit by the news both Trent Sainsbury and Adam Taggart look set to miss the crucial World Cup qualifying play-off clash against the UAE through injury.

Australia are priced at 500/1 to win the World Cup but need to qualify first of all and play the UAE on Tuesday night. If they come through that then just Peru stand between them and a place at the finals in Qatar.

Double setback

For once it looked as though coach Graham Arnold had pretty much a full squad to choose from. The loss of Tom Rogic was the first blow and now it looks as though both Sainsbury and Taggart will miss out.

They have picked up injury niggles and Arnold will have to turn to other members of his squad. The loss of Sainsbury is a particular blow. He has been a regular in the heart of the Socceroos defence.

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However it presents an opportunity for Bailey Wright who is expected to partner Milos Degenek in central defence. Taggart was unlikely to start but was pushing both Jamie McLaren and Mitch Duke for a place in attack.

Socceroos in great shape

Despite one or two absentees, Arnold could not be happier heading into the UAE game.

"We're not looking at anything behind us," Arnold said. "Everything's in front of us, and that's from the first game, and that's tomorrow night.

“Physically, we're in great shape. Mentally, the boys are in great spirits. I believe with that mental Aussie strength that we will come through."

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