Jets name 19-man squad for Sydney blockbuster

The Newcastle Jets have named an extended 19-man squad for Saturday’s blockbuster clash with Sydney FC at Hunter Stadium.

The Hunter Ports Newcastle Jets have named an extended 19-man squad for Saturday-s blockbuster clash with Sydney FC at Hunter Stadium.

Bernardo Ribeiro, Taylor Regan, Jacob Pepper and Michael Bridges have all been added to the extended squad after not making the trip to Perth for last week-s 3-0 loss to the Glory.

Van Egmond said he was looking at a number of options in regards to who should play in-behind Emile Heskey to offer the former England international support.

“Adam played last week just off Emile and I thought he did OK,” van Egmond said.

“He has the flexibility of being able to play in a wide area or in that position, but so do a couple of others.

“There-s Craig Goodwin who has obviously been doing quite well, young James Virgili has been doing well, Ryan Griffiths is another one and you can throw Michael Bridges and Marko Jesic into that mix as well.

“There-s good competition for places in the front third and on Friday we-ll nail down who is going to start and who is going to be on the bench.”

The Jets are still without injured players Ben Kantarovski, Mark Birighitti, Jobe Wheelhouse and James Brown.

Goalkeeper Ben Kennedy will make his return from a knee problem in the Jets youth team-s game against Sydney FC at Wanderers Oval, Broadmeadow on Sunday morning.

“Jobe-s getting closer to partaking in training and Ben Kennedy and Mark Birighitti are also closer to coming back,” van Egmond said.

“The only one missing then would be Ben Kantarovski who has had a prolonged injury due to his knee.”

Brown recently had a cortisone injection in order to aid the recovery of an ankle problem that had been troubling him.

“James- ankle is still giving him some grief and it has been a nagging issue,” van Egmond explained said.

“He went and played in Adelaide with the youth team, just to see if he could get some confidence by playing with the younger ones and starting score and provide some goals.

“Unfortunately he still had the same issues as far as that ankle is concerned, so he got a cortisone injection and he-ll have the weekend off.

“He-s already feeling so much better, he-s got that much more range already in his ankle and we-re hoping that-s going to be the trigger to allow James to be able to start playing and feel free with his movement.”

Mitchell Oxborrow drops out of the squad after making his debut against Perth Glory last week.

“It may be the difference in making Mitchell Oxborrow a footballer or not maiing Mitchell Oxborrow a footballer, to experience that 45 minutes against Perth and for him to get an understanding of what it-s like at that level,” van Egmond explained.

“It was unfortunate what happened to him right on half-time, but there were a lot of good things he did as well.

“His attitude at training has been spot on and he-s definitely one for the future. He-s just got to keep his head, down and keep working hard because he-s got plenty of talent and he-ll get his chance again.”

Newcastle Jets squad: 2. Scott Neville, 3. Tiago Calvano, 4. Josh Mitchell, 5. Dominik Ritter, 8. Ruben Zadkovich, 9. Emile Heskey, 10. Bernardo Ribeiro 11. Connor Chapman, 12. Josh Brillante, 13. Sam Gallaway 14. Taylor Regan 15. Craig Goodwin, 17. James Virgili, 18. Jacob Pepper, 19. Michael Bridges 22. Adam Taggart, 23. Ryan Griffiths, 30. Jack Duncan (gk), 33. Matt Nash (gk).

Ins: Bernardo Ribeiro, Taylor Regan, Jacob Pepper, Michael Bridges. Outs: Mitch Oxborrow, Andrew Hoole. Unavailable: Ben Kennedy (knee), Ben Kantarovski (knee), Mark Birighitti (cheekbone), Jobe Wheelhouse (knee), James Brown (ankle).

Newcastle Jets v Sydney FC Saturday, December 22 Hunter Stadium Kick-off 5.30pm Tickets from PROticket

Limited parking will be available for purchase at the car park entrances on game days for the remainder of the Jets 2012/13 season. Whilst there will be parking available for purchase, Hunter Venues does encourage patrons to pre-purchase their parking tickets at a PROticket outlet or online at www.proticket.com.au as parking is subject to availability.