Souttar: I've got full confidence in the boys come June

As Harry Souttar continues his rehabilitation following an ACL injury, the Socceroos defender is confident his Green and Gold teammates can book a spot at this year's FIFA World Cup.

Souttar was proving to be one of Australia’s most important players before his season was cut short in November, when he suffered an anterior cruciate ligament injury against Saudi Arabia.

Prior to making his Socceroos debut, Souttar had never set foot in Australia but with six goals in his first ten senior appearances, he quickly became a hero in Green and Gold.

Harry Souttar
Souttar quickly became a hero after scoring six goals in his first five international appearances.

While the Stoke City defender will not feature in the Socceroo's June play-offs, Souttar is hoping to cheer his nation on from the stands.

 “The gaffer and physios at Stoke will tell you that I’m fighting to get fit for June but they’re saying no chance, no chance,” Souttar told The Official A-Leagues Podcast

“I think there's a stat with an ACL injury that if you come back before six months there is something like a 75 per cent chance of doing it again.

“It’s been five months now and I’m only just getting into ball work. I’ll need proper running and match fitness and playing games beforehand so I don’t think it was ever feasible to try to get back for June – but I’ve got full confidence in the boys that they’ll get the job done.

“The results haven’t quite gone in the way we’d hoped with the national team but we’re still in a position like we were with the last World Cup to win the play-offs and get through. 

We’ve got two games, two massive games and hopefully, I’ll try to get over for the games in Qatar to watch.”

Born and raised in Aberdeen, Souttar lined up for Scotland’s Under 17 and Under 19 teams before representing the Olyroos and committing his allegiances to the Socceroos.

Since entering Australia’s setup, Souttar has embraced the family atmosphere that exists within the group and the 23-year-old believes the Socceroos’ camaraderie will help the side to get through the play-offs and qualify for a fifth-consecutive FIFA World Cup. 

“The one thing about the group, it’s such an upbeat and positive group,” Souttar explained.

It’s like one big family. I think everyone loves coming away. I know I look forward to it all the time, seeing the boys.

“Everyone may be playing on opposite sides of the world but when you come together, you click straight away. I know the last camp there were a lot of injuries, so hopefully, a lot of them will be back to make the team stronger.

“We all have to just get behind the boys and I’m sure they’ll do it.”

The Socceroos head to Doha to take on the United Arab Emirates in a vital AFC Play-off on June 7, with the victorious nation set to face Peru a week later for a place at the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.