Jets name squad to face Wellington

The Newcastle Jets have named an 18-man squad for Sunday’s clash with Wellington Phoenix at Hunter Stadium.

The Hunter Ports Newcastle Jets have named an 18-man squad for Sunday-s clash with Wellington Phoenix at Hunter Stadium.

After missing last weekend-s clash with Western Sydney Wanderers due to back spasms, Emile Heskey has been included in the extended squad for Sunday-s game against Wellington.

Jets assistant coach Craig Deans said the fitness of the former England international will continue to be assessed in the lead up to the match.

“Emile is going to need to get on the pitch during the week at some point in time and have a good hit out with the rest of the boys and see how he pulls up from that,” Deans said.

New signing David Carney has not been included in the squad as he regains fitness following a short lay-off since the his former Club New York Red Bulls were knocked out of the Major League Soccer (MLS) playoffs in November.

‘‘Obviously he hasn-t played a game since November in the MLS, so he-s a couple of months without a match,-- Deans said.

‘‘It-s just a matter of getting some running into him and getting him up to the fitness of the rest of the group, or as close to it as we can.

“We want to make sure we push him hard, but don-t break him, so this week is probably a little bit too early, but hopefully the week after we can see some sort of game time for him.”

Newcastle Jets squad: 1. Mark BIRIGHITTI (gk), 3. Taylor REGAN, 4. Kew JALIENS, 6. Zenon CARAVELLA, 7. Andrew HOOLE, 8. Ruben ZADKOVICH (c), 9. Emile HESKEY, 11. Craig GOODWIN, 13. Joey GIBBS, 15. Josh BRILLANTE, 16. Jacob PEPPER, 17. James VIRGILI, 19. Michael BRIDGES, 21. Sam GALLAWAY, 20. Ben KENNEDY (gk), 22. Adam TAGGART, 24. Mitch OXBORROW, 27. Nick WARD (two to be omitted).

Ins: 24. Mitch OXBORROW (promoted)

Outs: 29. Joel GRIFFITHS (suspension - two weeks)

Unavailable: 2. Scott NEVILLE (knee injury - long term) 5. Ben KANTAROVSKI (knee - short term), 25. Mitch COOPER (knee injury - long term).

Newcastle Jets v Wellington Phoenix Sunday, February 9 Hunter Stadium Kick-off 5pm Tickets available from PROticket.