Country over club for Cahill

Representing the Socceroos remains Tim Cahill's number one priority despite reported concerns from the New York Red Bulls, who are eyeing the MLS play-offs.

The 34-year-old will miss the New York Red Bulls' critical match against Toronto FC while on international duty with the Socceroos for friendlies against the United Arab Emirates and Qatar.

With the Red Bulls and Toronto FC fighting for their MLS play-off lives, the clubs will meet October 11 in a crucial Eastern Conference encounter but Cahill considers his duty to Australia as more important.

Going into this weekend's MLS action, New York leads Toronto by one point for the final Eastern Conference play-off slot.

But Australia's all-time leading goalscorer emphasised that representing the Socceroos continues to be a priority heading into the AFC Asian Cup, which will be held on home shores in January.

"If they (the club) are upset that I go on international duty, I have stated before coming to this club that it was my main focus," Cahill told reporters.

"It was stated to the MLS. It is what it is. I don't make the FIFA dates the same time as every other FIFA date. It's a pleasure to play for your country.

"It's not tough for me. All I have to do is keep the fans happy and play well. Internationally, get myself ready for a massive Asia Cup. I've stated that from the start."

Cahill has struggled for much of the 2014 MLS season, compiling just two goals and two assists in 21 games after notching 11 goals and five assists for last year's Supporters' Shield-winning team.

He has come off the bench in two of New York's past four games, while splitting time between the front line and a central midfield role.

"I'll always make myself available," Cahill said.

"Last week against the LA Galaxy, I was a holding midfielder. The week before, I was a striker. So who knows? For me, it doesn't matter because I am a professional. It's not my problem.

"I have always been honest and stated from the start, club and country mean everything for me and this is going to be the biggest tournament of my life in regards to winning something at home on my home soil. I don't pick the formation. I don't pick the team. All I know is last year, it seemed to be going okay."

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