Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Why Viduka shelved retirement for the Asian Cup

Australian and EPL club Newcastle striker Mark Viduka has revealed why he shelved his international retirement plans at the 11th hour and opted to play for the Socceroos at the AFC Asian Cup 2007. "I realised in that day-and-a-half I had to think about it properly, that I wanted to be part of this Asian Cup team and part of Australia," he told David Davutovic of Adelaide Now while in Singapore. "Initially I was in two minds. I didn't know whether to retire or not and I mentioned it to Arnie [Socceroo coach Graham Arnold] and I said 'it looks like I will go that way'. Then the next two days I had a good think about it and I just felt it meant too much for me to play for Australia, just to give it away like that. I made the decision myself."

Viduka said he'd considered retirement from international games because "I've got a lot on my plate at the moment with changing clubs, and that's how it came about. Newcastle is a big commitment - it's something you can't go into half-hearted and it was very difficult to juggle the two." However now he is very exited. "We have a good chance. I don't want to be too cocky (but) we're quietly confident. It's no good us yelling and screaming how good we are, we've got to show it. For us there's a big pride factor here - it's our first time in Asia and hopefully we can show how good we are.It's great, it's nice to be in camp with the boys again and playing for Australia again."

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