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Socceroos hit by double injury blow with Boyle and Vukovic stricken

3:39 AM IST 31/07/19
Martin Boyle Socceroos
The green and gold will be without two important squad members for the start of World Cup qualifying

The Socceroos have been hit by a blow just a month before World Cup qualification with senior squad members Martin Boyle and Danny Vukovic struck down by long-term injuries.

Boyle has suffered a recurrence of the knee injury he picked up while preparing for Australia's Asian Cup participation in December last year, while Vukovic has undergone surgery for a torn Achilles tendon - with both certain to miss a chunk of Australia's Qatar 2022 qualifiers that start in September.

Twenty-six-year-old Boyle hurt his knee during Hibernian's Scottish League Cup win against Elgin City on Saturday and is expected to be unavailable until 2020 after being sent for surgery.

The Scottish-born winger was disappointed by the setback but was positive he could return to his best form after rehabilitation.

"There's no doubting it's a blow because I put everything into my recovery in the last few months," Boyle said.

"The positive is that I know what the rehabilitation entails, and I'm just determined to do things properly and get back to the level I know I can get to."

Vukovic, 34, tweeted a picture of himself following surgery on the Achilles injury, that could keep him out of football for up to six months.

He played in Genk's 2-1 opening round victory against Kortrijik in the Belgian Pro League, but it's unclear whether the injury was suffered during the match or at training.

Both Boyle and Vukovic have been integral Socceroos squad members since Graham Arnold took national team reins following the 2018 World Cup.

Boyle has scored twice in two Socceroos friendlies but has yet to play a competitive match for his adopted nation because of injury.

Vukovic is the team's second choice goalkeeper behind Premier League star Mat Ryan, and his absence will likely see J-League based Mitch Langerak promoted to back-up and Andrew Redmayne or Lawrence Thomas in as third option.

The Socceroos' first World Cup qualifier is away to Kuwait on September 10 before matches against Nepal (home) and Chinese Taipei (away) in October.