Viduka Should Retire From International Football


New Australian football coach Pim Verbeek is trying to convince Australian captain and Newcastle United striker, Mark Viduka, to play a role in Australia’s qualifying for the 2010 World Cup.

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Mark Viduka – time to retire from International football?

The Dutchman arrived in Sydney today to start his contract to get Australia to the South African World Cup in 2010, and said only Viduka, among Australia’s sizable European playing contingent, had yet to decide on his World Cup plans. The skillful Newcastle United striker has been hinting he may concentrate on his club football, and we’re sure Big Sam is helping him with that. 😀

But Verbeek, not surprisingly, sees great value in the 32-year-old striker for Australia’s World Cup cause, and is hopeful Viduka will play some role in the World Cup campaign.

Verbeek said today:

“If you are good enough to play for Newcastle United, then you are good enough to play in the national team of Australia,”

“I don’t care about Viduka’s age — I only want to win the game (against Qatar) and every game to qualify for the World Cup.”

Verbeek is the former South Korean national coach, and he has spoken with Viduka over the phone to outline his vision for the Australians.

Verbeek continued:

“I have had a good conversation with him, he is just coming back from injury and he played a whole game last Saturday which I saw on television,”

“I think he played quite well but he says he is still a little bit struggling from the last Asian Cup with not enough rest and holidays.”

Verbeek said he would not be asking Viduka to play all of Australia’s minimum 14 World Cup qualifiers, but he hoped he would play in at least some of them.

“He is still a dangerous striker and an experienced striker, and if he can still bring something to the team, I will try to convince him that it is necessary for him to play.”

“Viduka is the only one who is still considering what he is going to do for February 6.” “I told them (the European-based players) that in coming months I will find out what is the best solution to win the game against Qatar,”

If we were Verbeek, we would probably be doing the exact same thing and trying to get one of the best-ever Australian players to play in the next World Cup. But Viduka does not have a lot of time left at the top, and he may want to think of finally retiring from International football. That will help him greatly, with both his injuries and his career at Newcastle United.

Yes, it may be selfish and from a Newcastle viewpoint, but we think it’s probably the best thing for Mark Viduka.

What do you think? Let us know – comments always very welcome.



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10 comments so far

  • Betting on the Toon

    Dec 13, 2007 at 11:53 AM

    Comment #1

    I can see why they think he’d be good for the national side, as, after all, he’s very experienced. But I’m with you that he’d be better off concentrating on Newcastle for the good of the side. I can’t see it though as, personally, I reckon the draw to play international football, when playing overseas, always outweighs the desire to play for your club. Fair enough, I suppose.

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  • ilkkaustoon

    Dec 13, 2007 at 12:01 PM

    Comment #2

    i think its retarded that Pim Verbeek is even considering mark viduka by 2010 he will be too old by then why doesnt he let some up and coming young aussie stars take his place, besides i think that by 2010 mark viduka will be playing for the newcastle reserves if he is still at tyneside

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  • Rich

    Dec 13, 2007 at 12:19 PM

    Comment #3

    itys obvious Viduka is weighing up his options as he hasnt decided yet.

    But i think hes best to concentrate on the Toon, as a supporter im biased but i think logically if he keeps fit and plays well for us he will get more recognition than if he plays well for the Ozzies.

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  • Hammy

    Dec 13, 2007 at 12:23 PM

    Comment #4

    I’ll help you out here Ed….
    The Duke should say thanks but no thanks…
    as anybody who has been to Oz will tell you…the jet lag stays with you a couple of days…and that is just one way…you’d have to be nuts to be a professional sportsman and do that kind of travelling in a busy winter season and with the Duke being 32 he hasn’t got many big pay days left. He’d be far better doing the biz for the toon and try and win a contract extension imo.

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  • Shane Coghlan

    Dec 13, 2007 at 12:51 PM

    Comment #5

    Interesting dilemma for me as a Toon and an Aussie :P. TBH he will be too old by the time the World Cup comes along so maybe a farewell match or two. (Seems to be an Aussie tradition)
    I don’t think recognition will be an issue as i expect dukes to come to an Aussie club after he leaves Newcastle whether he gets many games or not at Newcastle.

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  • George

    Dec 13, 2007 at 1:33 PM

    Comment #6

    It is all players dream to represent their country in their chosen sport and i for one would not deter them. However, due to the lack of form and fitness of Mark Viduka, i think it would be wise to knuckle down and get back fitness and what little pace he has before anyone, including the Australian coach, start bleating on about playing foor Australia. I think all NUFC supporters would be pleased to see him represent his country, but not at the expence of NUFC the team who pay his wages. We do not want another saga like we have with Michael Owen.

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  • Leo

    Dec 13, 2007 at 3:26 PM

    Comment #7

    he fkin better not play for them he will be soo old if he does, actually tbh i hope he is not at the club by 2010

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  • Tom from Aus

    Dec 13, 2007 at 11:12 PM

    Comment #8

    being an aussie i want dukes to play for the socceroos. He is a great role model for players coming through the a-leage. And i also think that viduka and scott mcdonald ( of celtic ) would make a great pair up front for aus.

    i believe that the socceroos can make it to the quarter-finals of the world cup if they play well. its not suprising with the good players we have: mcdonald, viduka (if he plays), kewell, cahill, culina, brecsiano neil

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  • Ross

    Dec 13, 2007 at 11:58 PM

    Comment #9

    scott mcdonald can carry the aus flag, i’d like big mark to continue on with his toon carreer if i’m honest.

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  • Dickroo of Sydney

    Dec 14, 2007 at 4:13 AM

    Comment #10

    Pim Verbeek should drop the Dukes now.

    It’s perfect time for the new coach to set up an example and show those Aussie Euro stars authority.

    You can’t decide? Fine. Door closed.

    There’re plenty young talents want to crack in the national team.

    No begging, Pim, Please!

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