Moore Gets Nod To Wear Captain's Armband

Defender Craig Moore has been named as the captain of the Socceroos for Wednesday night’s (Thursday morning AEST) friendly match against Venezuela. Moore replaces regular captain Paul Okon who was not selected for the match.

Defender Craig Moore has been named as the captain of the Socceroos for Wednesday night-s (Thursday morning AEST) friendly match against Venezuela. Moore replaces regular captain Paul Okon who was not selected for the match.   “Craig Moore will captain the side,” Farina told the media by tele-conference this morning. “He is captain of Glasgow Rangers at the moment, which is not only one of the biggest clubs in Scotland but Europe.  “So it was a pretty easy choice for me.”  Moore has been an integral member of the Socceroos squad for many years, having made 23 appearances since making his debut against Ghana in 1995. But for injuries, Moore will have played many more games for the green and gold and when it has come to the big games, he has always been one of the first players named on the team sheet.   He gets his chance after Okon was not considered by Farina, who had just completed a transfer to Belgium club KV Oostende from Vicenza, where he struggled to get game time.    “Maybe,” Farina said when asked if he could see this as a permanent role for him. “All I can say it-s for this game and I-m sure he will do a good job, there is no doubt about that.   “But we can only see what happens in the future in terms of players availability. This is certainly an opportunity for him and I-m sure he is very happy about it and will do a good job as I said.”  Moore, who has played at every international level for Australia, was obviously delighted with the honour, saying “It-s a very proud day for myself and my family and its one I am sure I will never forget.  “It-s not something I have thought about to be quite honest with you, but obviously now I have been given this opportunity I-ll make sure I enjoy it.”  “I have been given the opportunity for this game and I will obviously like to impress and do a good job,” Moore said when asked if he would like the job down the track.   “Whether that means long term then so be it. But at this particular moment it is just this game and I-ll enjoy every minute of it.”  Moore doesn-t see his role as captain of the national team differing too much from that as captain of Rangers.   “Obviously I have gone through it taking over the captaincy at Rangers this season,” he said.   “I don-t think it changes you a great deal, as far as on the pitch, I have always been quite vocal and off the pitch I have always been quite approachable and if people need a hand or advice I-m there for that.   “I wouldn-t imagine it been any different for the national team and like I said I-ll enjoy this game, as it might just be the one game, but it-s a challenge and I-m really looking forward to it.”  While the most of the media attention has focused on the players that haven-t turned up, all he and the rest of the players are worried about is Wednesday-s match.   “It-s a new experience for of us (playing against new teams) but obviously it-s something we are going to have to come up against, so it is a very important game for us.”  “For me the only focus is on the players that are here. We-re focused for this game on Wednesday night, as it-s an important match as far as what lies ahead in the next 18 months.  “Its something that we are looking forward to and are all focused on it.”   Meanwhile Farina is confident despite the absence of so many big names, that the players that are here will do their country proud.   “I think we-ll definitely give a good account of ourselves. We-re playing away to a South American team that is playing exceptionally well at the moment.   “I-m confident the guys that are here, they won-t go out there and give a below par performance. We-re looking at going out there and playing extremely well and hopefully getting a result because we are treating it as we would coming away to South America for a first leg match.”  Of the players in camp, Farina-s only concern continues to be Empoli midfielder Vince Grella, who is struggling with calf and knee problems.   “He was jogging today - just lightly. We-ll have a better indication tomorrow, but at this stage he doesn-t look really positive.”