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Veteran forward Tim Cahill says he swapped Everton and the Premier League for Major League Soccer to extend his international career and reach another World Cup with Australia.
"If I stayed in the Premier League, I would have had to retire from international football, simple," the New York Red Bulls man told soccerly.com.
"So our plan worked. It could have backfired."
Kim to start for Central Coast
The Mariners' Korean playmaker had his first involvement in the A-League as a substitute away to Adelaide United last week and will be involved from kick-off at home to Wellington Phoenix in the opening game of Round 20.
"I can tell you Kim will start on Friday," head coach Phil Moss said.
"He's looked good in training, he got his 30 minutes off the bench last week ... he's convinced me that he's ready to go from the start."
Mariners want schedule change
Sticking with the title holders, Moss wants Football Federation Australia officials to experience the draining effect of the travel involved in AFC Champions League competition to convince the governing body to allow clubs involved in the tournament more leeway on their return to the A-League.
"When someone inside FFA understands what it's like to make that trip, play a game then come back and do it all again here, we might make some progress," he said.
Heskey rues interruptions
The Newcastle Jets' marquee centre-forward Emile Heskey is disappointed to have endured an injury-plagued 2013-14 campaign for the Hunter Stadium club.
"It's been a frustrating season, because at the end of the day I haven't played as much as I would've like to and I haven't been as fit as I would've liked," he said.
"It's just been one of those seasons. I've played for near on 20 years now and I can't say I've had a season where I've damaged both knees and have had back problems."
Heart turnaround a mystery
Orlando Engelaar is at as much of a loss as anyone to explain Melbourne Heart's transformation from winless no-hopers to the A-League's form team.
"Nobody can," the Dutch marquee international told reporters.
"That's football. Things can just change with a snap of the fingers. Nothing special has to happen to make things turn around. That's the beauty of the game."
Finals talk premature
Still with the Heart, centre-back Patrick Kisnorbo has dismissed suggestions John van 't Schip's side are now on course for a top-six finish.
"Look, we are still bottom of the table and there's no getting away from that," he said.
"Yes, we are on a good run and long may it continue but at this stage of the season seven points between us and the playoffs is a decent-sized gap."
Poljak omitted from ACL squad
Western Sydney Wanderers have left out-of-favour midfielder Mateo Poljak out of their squad for the AFC Champions League group stage.
No assurances for Farina
Sydney FC coach Frank Farina says he has been given no indication by Sky Blues officials of how likely he is to keep his job despite orchestrating a much-needed win against Perth Glory last time out.
"It's pretty simple, it's not rocket science and there's no hidden agendas or secret messages," he said.
"Things calm down and the wolves stay away a little bit when you do well and get results."
Brosque wants to stay in UAE
Australian striker Alex Brosque is hopeful of remaining in the United Arab Emirates but has not been approached by Al Ain over extending his contract, which expires at the end of the season.
"At the moment it’s sort of up in the air," he told Sport360.
"I'm happy here and my family are settled in Al Ain but either way I’d like to stay in the country.
"My family is really enjoying it here and we've got some friends here so I think I’d like to stay here for another year or two and then see what happens."