Jets name squad for crucial Victory clash

The Newcastle Jets have named an 18-man squad for Saturday’s vital clash with Melbourne Victory at Hunter Stadium.

The Hunter Ports Newcastle Jets have named an 18-man squad for Saturday-s vital clash with Melbourne Victory at Hunter Stadium.

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Zane said he expected to field a similar line-up to the previous few weeks, with the only notable exception being the inclusion of Ben Kantarovski in place of the injured Zenon Caravella.

“Obviously we lose Caravella and we-ll do a straight swap with Kantarovski there,” Zane said.

“Aside from that we-ll probably go with similar personnel.

“We might shake the bench up a little bit this week to have a look at the impact we can make, because everything we do now needs to be from a positive thought first and foremost.

“I need players on the bench who I think can make a difference if it-s required later in the game.

“There-s two or three positions on the bench that we-re still looking to fill and we-ll decide on that in the next day or so.”

Among those in contention for the remaining spots on the bench are Andrew Hoole, Nick Ward and Jacob Pepper, who have all been included in Zane-s squad after being left out for last weekend-s clash with Perth Glory at nib Stadium.

Zane said that while the Jets would no doubt miss the impact of Caravella in the centre of midfield, Kantarovski would bring a different set of valuable attributes to the line-up.

“Zenon is one that really gets our play started,” Zane explained.

“He-s quite clever with his ability to keep the ball and keep things ticking over for us in midfield.

“But then you bring in another player like Kanta, who it has been hard to leave out of the team in recent weeks because it was only due to the good form of the other midfielders that he wasn-t selected.

“Kanta will plug a big hole in midfield which will probably allow Ruben Zadkovich to get himself in a higher position, which he probably hasn-t been able to do playing alongside Zenon.

“We-ve still got that good balance in midfield where one will be a little bit more defensive minded and the other will be able to release a little bit higher up the park.”

Newcastle Jets squad: 1. Mark BIRIGHITTI (gk), 4. Kew JALIENS, 5. Ben KANTAROVSKI, 7. Andrew HOOLE, 8. Ruben ZADKOVICH (c), 9. Emile HESKEY, 11. Craig GOODWIN, 14. Josh MITCHELL, 15. Josh BRILLANTE, 16. Jacob PEPPER, 19. Michael BRIDGES, 21. Sam GALLAWAY, 20. Ben KENNEDY (gk), 22. Adam TAGGART, 23. David CARNEY, 24. Mitch OXBORROW, 27. Nick WARD, 29. Joel GRIFFITHS.

Ins: 7. Andrew HOOLE (promoted), 16. Jacob PEPPER (promoted), 27. Nick WARD (promoted).

Outs: 3. Zenon CARAVELLA (knee injury - four to six weeks).

Unavailable: 2. Scott NEVILLE (knee injury - long term) 25. Mitch COOPER (knee injury - long term).

Newcastle Jets v Melbourne Victory Hunter Stadium Saturday April 5 Kick-off 5.30pm Tickets available from PROticket.