Australia call up Maclaren to preliminary WCup squad

FILE- In this June 25, 2017 file photo, Chile's Paulo Cesar Diaz Huincales, left, challenges for the ball with Australia's Jamie Maclaren, right, during the Confederations Cup, Group B soccer match between Chile and Australia, at the Spartak Stadium in Moscow. Striker Jamie Maclaren has been recalled to Australia's preliminary World Cup squad because of concerns over the fitness of Tomi Juric. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko, File)

Striker Jamie Maclaren has been recalled to Australia's preliminary World Cup squad because of concerns over the fitness of Tomi Juric

SYDNEY — Striker Jamie Maclaren has been recalled to Australia's preliminary World Cup squad because of concerns over the fitness of Tomi Juric.

Australia's head coach Bert van Marwijk released a statement on Monday confirming that Maclaren was joining the team's training camp in Turkey ahead of the final squad selection next month.

"Tomi Juric has had a knee issue over the last three weeks which is being monitored by our medical team," van Marwijk said.

"We hope that Tomi will be able to train and play this week, but his recovery might also take longer.

"That is why we have decided to bring in Jamie Maclaren now so that he also has a fair chance to display his qualities before the final 23 player squad must be announced."

A regular starter for Australia, Juric would be a big loss to the Socceroos if ruled out of the World Cup.

Maclaren, currently on loan to Scottish club Hibernian, was selected in Australia's initial 32-man squad for the World Cup but was left out when the roster was cut to 26.

With his addition, there are now 27 players in camp, but only 23 can be picked for the World Cup. The deadline for selection for all qualified countries is June 4.

The Socceroos are due to play a friendly against the Czech Republic in Austria on Friday before the squad for Russia is announced.

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