November 5, 2017 / 5:55 AM / 19 days ago

Soccer: Cahill to travel for World Cup playoff, Kruse out

SYDNEY (Reuters) - Australia forward Tim Cahill will travel to Honduras for Friday’s World Cup playoff first leg but will delay his departure to allow for more treatment on his injured ankle, Football Federation Australia said on Sunday.

Soccer Football - 2018 World Cup Qualifications - Asia - Syria vs Australia - Olympic Stadium, Sydney, Australia - October 10, 2017 - Australia's Tim Cahill (L) celebrates goal. REUTERS/David Gray/Files

Robbie Kruse, however, will miss the match in San Pedro Sula after the VfL Bochum forward was ruled out with a knee injury, reducing the travelling squad to 22 players with Mark Milligan and Mathew Leckie suspended for the opening leg.

The 37-year-old Cahill, Australia’s most prolific international goalscorer, injured his ankle in A-League action for Melbourne City on Friday.

“Cahill was cleared of a fractured ankle on Saturday, however he will require continued assessment and treatment before a determination regarding his eligibility for the forthcoming matches is made by medical and coaching staff,” said a statement.

Cahill scored his 49th and 50th goals for his country to ensure Australia defeated Syria in last month’s Asian playoff, which set up the intercontinental tie for a place in next year’s tournament in Russia.

Even if he fails to recover in time for the first leg, Australian football fans will be desperate for him to play some part in the second leg in Sydney on Nov. 15.

Reporting by Nick Mulvenney; Editing by Toby Davis

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