Aussies abroad update

Socceroos striker Eli Babalj has found the net in the Netherlands while Josh Brillante played another 90 minutes for Fiorentina.

 Babalj scored just after the hour mark in Jong AZ Alkmaar’s 3-1 win over Jong Go Ahead Eagles on Tuesday. 

 It’s just the start to the season the 22-year-old would have wanted as he aims to force his way into the AZ first team. 

The former Melbourne Heart striker has endured a torrid time with injury since joining the Dutch club, missing six months of last season having undergone hernia surgery in September.

 But he is looking sharp after a full pre-season and is hopeful his best and most consistent form is in front of him.

 Babalj has two Socceroos caps to his name in 2012, and has two goals for the national team against Guam. 

 Brillante continued to push his claims for a starting spot for Fiorentina’s Serie A opener with another strong 90-minute showing in the friendly win over Spanish second division side Real Betis 2-1. 

 The Viola scored twice in the first half with goals to Juan Vargas and Khouma Babacar to maintain their impressive results during their pre-season campaign. 

The former Newcastle Jets midfielder produced another tireless display and must be close to securing a spot in the XI for their season-opener against AS Roma. 

Meanwhile, Socceroos defender Trent Sainsbury is still awaiting the results of scans on his ankle injury suffered over the weekend.

Sainsbury lasted just 29 minutes before he was forced off in PEC Zwolle’s 2-0 win over FC Utrecht.