Aussies Abroad Preview: Socceroos return to action in Scotland & Serbia
Socceroos duo Tom Rogic and Martin Boyle will feature for their respective clubs when the Scottish Premiership begins this weekend while Milos Degenek will also be back in action as the Serbian Superliga campaign kicks off.
The Scottish Premiership ended prematurely last season due to the COVID-19 pandemic, so it has been a lengthy lay off for all the sides.
Martin Boyle’s Hibernian long-awaited return to action will arrive at 12am* on Sunday when they welcome Kilmarnock to Easter Road.
Hibernian came in sixth last season while Kilmarnock ended the campaign in eighth place.
These two side went head to head three times last season with Boyle’s side collecting a loss, draw and a win in their three meetings.
Keep an eye out the cardboard cut-out kangaroos which are set to feature in the stands at Easter Road this season.
Socceroos and Celtic midfielder Tom Rogic will kickstart his season on Monday morning at 1:30am when they face off against Hamilton Academical.
Celtic won all three of their clashes against Hamilton in their championship-winning campaign last season.
Hamilton finished in the relegation play-off spot last season and remain in the Scottish top flight after the decision was made to cancel all play-offs due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
It will be a short turnaround for Milos Degenek and his FK Crvena Zvezda as the 2020/21 Serbian Superliga campaign begins this weekend, only a matter of weeks after last season finished.
The 2019/20 season ended only just over a month ago on June 20 when Degenek’s side celebrated the title in front of their home fans at a packed-out stadium.
The honeymoon period for the champions has not lasted long and they will be looking to go for a fourth straight title this time around.
They kick off their campaign with a home fixture against Novi Pazar with proceedings set to get underway from 3:30am on Sunday.
Over to the Japanese J League and Mitch Langerak’s Nagoya Grampus will go head to head against Kashiwa Reysol at 7pm on Saturday night.
Nagoya’s previous match against Hiroshima was postponed after a coronavirus outbreak in the Grampus camp.
Prior to the postponement of that fixture, Langerak’s side were on a three game winning streak with the Aussie shot stopper also on a hot streak of his own with three consecutive clean sheets.
Thomas Deng and his Urawa Red Diamonds will take to the pitch on Saturday when they host Shimizu S-Pulse at 8pm.
Urawa returned to the winners circle last time out thanks to a 2-0 win against Yokohama FC.
Shimizu have had a slow start to their campaign however they notched their first victory against Oita Trinita last Sunday.
In the Korean K League, Brandon O’Neill’s Pohang Steelers travel to face Jeonbuk FC at 8pm on Saturday.
It will be a case of second versus third, with Jeonbuk sitting in second place, five points better off than the Steelers
It was Jeonbuk who came out on top the last time these two sides met when they won 2-1 in Pohang back in mid-June.
Adam Taggart and Terry Antonis are set to feature for Suwon Bluewings when they take on Daegu FC at 8pm on Sunday.
The Bluewings will be hoping to build upon last weekend’s win at Gwangju but it will prove to be quite the challenge given that they fell to a 3-1 defeat against Daegu in their previous meeting.
Heading to the English Championship and Brad Smith was an unused substitute for Cardiff City in their first leg play-off at home to Fulham on Tuesday morning.
Cardiff fell to a 2-0 defeat and will have their work cut out for them when they travel to Craven Cottage for the second leg at 4:45am on Friday.
*All times displayed are in AEST