Squad: Vargas returns for Wanderers clash

It’s a welcome return to the match day squad for Ronald Vargas, with the Venezuelan set to make his return from injury against the Wanderers this Saturday.

Vargas has been included in what’s largely an unchanged preliminary squad from Ernie Merrick, however the Jets boss has hinted that there could be changes to the XI that fell to the Phoenix in Round 23.

CEO: McKinna far from your average

A-LEAGUE: Merrick to give youth a chance

Merrick indicated that youth would be promoted in the final rounds as he looks ahead to the Hyundai A-League 2019/20 season, with the likes of Joe Champness and Angus Thurgate squarely in the frame for selection.

The Club’s other Olyroos in Johnny Koutroumbis and Ivan Vujica will be better for a week on home soil after a whirlwind few weeks on the road, with the latter also pushing for a place in the starting side.

Ben Kantarovski came through his return from injury last week unscathed and with no other injury concerns to report, Merrick has a full squad at his disposal.

Ben Kantarovski Central Coast Mariners
Ben Kantarovski has overcome a calf strain

Newcastle Jets: 1.Glen MOSS (gk), 4.Nigel BOOGAARD (c), 5.Ben KANTAROVSKI, 6.Steven UGARKOVIC, 7.Dimi PETRATOS, 8.Jair, 9.Roy O’DONOVAN, 10.Ronald VARGAS, 13.Ivan VUJICA, 14.Kaine SHEPPARD, 17.Daniel GEORGIEVSKI, 18.Johnny KOUTROUMBIS, 20.Lewis ITALIANO (gk), 22.Lachlan JACKSON, 23.Matt RIDENTON, 24.Joe CHAMPNESS, 32.Angus THURGATE, 44.Nikolai TOPOR-STANLEY

**two to be omitted**

Ins: 10.Ronald VARGAS (return from injury), 13.Ivan VUJICA (promoted)

Outs: 16.Nick COWBURN (omitted)

Unavailable: 3.Jason HOFFMAN (ankle – TBC)