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Moore to miss farewell match for teammates and Gamarra

Moore to miss farewell match for teammates and Gamarra

Newcastle United defender Craig Moore won't get a homecoming parade.
A missed training session cost him a place in the international send off match for several of his Socceroos teammates and Paraguay captain Carlos Gamarra.
Australia meets Paraguay here Saturday in a belated welcome home to most members of the squad that reached the World Cup second round, where a last-minute penalty resulted in a 1-0 loss to eventual champion Italy.
Moore missed a flight to Brisbane, a training session and several guest appearances Wednesday, and was suspended for a match.
Deprived the chance of leading his country in front of friends and family in his boyhood hometown, Moore asked for a release from the Socceroos squad for the subsequent match against Bahrain.
He returned to England immediately to rejoin Premier League club Newcastle.
Graham Arnold, who replaced Guus Hiddink as Australia coach after the World Cup, said he had no choice but to come down hard on Moore.
"Maybe if I had let it go it could have been party time," Arnold said. "It could have shown the signal that it isn't that serious, so let's just have fun. I couldn't afford that."
Moore held no grudges, said Arnold, who appointed Blackburn Rovers defender Lucas Neill as captain for Saturday's match and Wednesday's Asian Cup qualifier against Bahrain in Sydney.
Moore, a former Socceroos skipper, and Neill had been the best candidates to deputize as captain for the absent Mark Viduka.
"The frustrating and disappointing thing out of all of this is that we don't have (Moore) available for the most important thing, which is playing," said Arnold.
Socceroos veterans Zeljko Kalac, Tony Popovic, Tony Vidmar and Stan Lazaridis _ with 244 caps between them _ are all retiring after Saturday's match, which is expected to pull a 50,000-strong crowd.
All four will start the match, with Kalac getting the nod ahead of longtime goalkeeping rival Mark Schwarzer.
Paraguay will be without Bayern Munich pair Roque Santa Cruz, who scored twice at the World Cup, and Julio Dos Santos who declined to commit to the long flights to Australia.
The South Americans are also farewelling Gamarra, the former Inter Milan defender who is set to retire from international soccer.
A 2004 Olympic silver medalist, Gamarra once held a World Cup record of spending 383 minutes on the field without conceding a free kick (four matches in 1998).
Australia, ranked 38th, had a win and two draws against the 21st-ranked Paraguay at home in 2000, their only head-to-heads.
Since their surprising World Cup campaign, the Socceroos have played twice. A team of domestic-based players beat Kuwait 2-0 at home before a solid Socceroos squad was upset 2-0 at Kuwait last month.
Paraguay has had two wins, including a World Cup victory over Trinidad and Tobago, three draws and three losses since March.
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Squads:
Australia: Mark Schwarzer, Zeljko Kalac, Lucas Neill, Tim Cahill, Tony Vidmar, Tony Popovic, Brett Emerton, Josip Skoko, Stan Lazaridis, Ante Covic, Vince Grella, John Aloisi, Michael Beauchamp, Archie Thompson, Jason Culina, Luke Wilkshire, Mark Milligan, Marco Bresciano, Alex Brosque, Travis Dodd, Jade North.
Paraguay: Justo Villar, Pedro Sarabia, Delio Toledo, Carlos Gamarra, Carlos Bonet, Salvador Cabanas, Edgar Barreto, Roberto Acuna, Diego Gavilan, Derlis Gomez, Paulo De Silva, Julio Manzur, Christian Riveros, Jose Montiel, Oscar Cardozo, Jose Salcedo, Nelson Cuevas.


Updated : 2020-12-05 03:19 GMT+08:00