Panagiotis Kone could be surprise inclusion for Western United in their match against the Newcastle Jets despite going down with a hamstring injury last week.
Kone was substituted in the 22nd minute of the side’s win against the Western Sydney Wanderers but is in contention to feature this week, with the club set to make the call on Saturday.
Head coach Mark Rudan says Kone is “touch and go” and believes the club has done well in ensuring he makes a full recovery.
“He’s touch and go, we’ve got to be smart with him as well but it’s not as bad as first thought,” Rudan said.
“If he does miss this game, he’s definitely back the week after but he really wants to play this week as we’ll and we’ll give him until game day.
“We knew [about] his history [with injuries] as well that’s why he’s in a different kind of program as well in the gym and his strengthening program to make sure it doesn’t reoccur.
“We work really diligently and smartly with all the players, not just Kone, there are lots of players with history if injuries as well, so we have to individualise and tailor programs to suit their needs.”
Striker Besart Berisha is also available for selection after being rested last week.
The Western United coaching staff will have to make a tough decision as who starts up front, after Berisha’s replacement Kwabene Appiah-Kubi scored in his starting debut.
“[Berisha] demanded to train with the team again, it was an interesting conversation he wants to get back in which is normal,” Rudan said,
“He had the week off to re-charge his batteries, it’s been an interesting one because we’ve worked with both players so it’s not going to be an interesting decision for us, but we’ll make it on game day.”
Both Berisha and Kone have been named in the squad to take on the Jets this week.
Moreover, Socceroo Josh Risdon is also a chance to play with the right-back landing in the country on Saturday morning after representing Australia in its World Cup qualifier against Jordan.
“We’re in constant contact with Josh and he still may play part, again that’s another decision we’ll play on the day of the game,” Rudan said.
Featured Image: Hyundai A-League