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BERT van Marwijk names his first Socceroos squad next week in a massive indication as to who holds the inside running for a coveted spot in Australia’s 23-man squad for the World Cup.

Ange Postecoglou might have developed an established core over four years, but with a new man, comes new ideas. One just needs to look at the news out of Holland last week, which revealed conversations between the Dutchman and goalkeeper Brad Jones, who has not played for Australia since 2014, to see how clean the slate is for Australians playing across the globe.

Friendlies against Norway (Saturday) and Colombia are critical on two fronts for the Socceroos: precious time acclimatising to a new boss, while allowing fringe candidates to audition in front of his eyes.

Newly appointed head coach of the Australian national football team, Bert van Marwijk
Newly appointed head coach of the Australian national football team, Bert van MarwijkSource: AFP

Ahead of a preliminary squad announcement next week, before it is whittled down to 23 the week after, foxsports.com.au is re-igniting its Socceroos Power Rankings, grading the candidates on a players’ indispensability, current role and pedigree within the Socceroos ranks, their club level/form/fitness as well as acknowledging the fresh approach van Marwijk will bring.

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What Man Utd boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer did to Edinson Cavani after Aston Villa win

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Manchester United beat Aston Villa 3-1 in their Premier League showdown on Sunday.

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Manchester United star Mason Greenwood sets new record after scoring in Aston Villa win

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Manchester United beat Aston Villa 3-1 in their Premier League clash on Sunday.

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Chelsea wins, Sam Kerr golden boot honours

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Chelsea retained their Women’s Super League title with a thumping 5-0 victory over Reading on Monday (AEST), with Australian Sam Kerr claiming Golden Boot honours.

In her second season with Chelsea, Kerr bagged 21 league goals, and eight assists.

The Blues will now look to complete an English and European double when they face Barcelona in the Champions League final in Gothenburg.

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The Londoners, who saw off Bayern Munich 5-3 on aggregate in the semi-finals, are bidding to become European champions for the first time.

Chelsea won the 2019/20 WSL title on a points-per-game basis after the season was halted by the coronavirus pandemic in March 2020, the Blues then a point behind leaders Manchester City with a game in hand.

“Last season we weren’t the champions in some people’s eyes,” said Chelsea manager Emma Hayes. “But this season the players really wanted to demonstrate we’re the champions.

“There were four teams who could have been in with a shout and it’s gone to the last day which just demonstrates how hard it is,” she added.

“This is a moment to enjoy.”

Chelsea headed into the final round of this WSL campaign two points clear of City and with a better goal difference.

They were never in danger of being overhauled, with Melanie Leupolz putting them ahead against Reading before Fran Kirby’s double and further goals from Kerr and Erin Cuthbert completed a resounding win.

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