Aussie World Cup heroes to be feted next month | india | Hindustan Times
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Aussie World Cup heroes to be feted next month

india Updated: Sep 21, 2006 23:30 IST
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Australia's far-flung World Cup heroes and maybe ex-coach Guus Hiddink will be feted next month when they return home for two matches.

Football Federation Australia (FFA) said on Thursday 21 of their 23 World Cup squad members, most of who are based overseas, will be back for a friendly against Paraguay in Brisbane and Asian Cup qualifier against Bahrain in Sydney.

Only skipper Mark Viduka, whose wife is expecting a baby on October 11, and Harry Kewell who will be recovering from foot and groin surgery, will miss the games, the FFA said.

The FFA said several official functions were planned to celebrate their team's achievement in reaching the knockout second round of the World Cup in Germany in June only bowing out to a last-minute disputed penalty by eventual champions Italy.

"At a minimum we should have 21 of the 23 World Cup squad back here for those two games," FFA boss John O'Neill said on Thursday.

"There'll be a number of events to acknowledge their contribution and achievement in Germany."