Will he or won’t he? Coach won’t reveal Cahill’s status

FILE - In this June 15, 2018 file photo, Australia forward Tim Cahill, center, runs during Australia's official training for the group C match between France and Australia at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Kazan Arena in Kazan, Russia. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin, File)

SAMARA, Russia (AP) Australia’s coach would not say whether all-time leading scorer Tim Cahill would play on Thursday against Denmark.

”There’s always a chance – for all the players,” Bert van Marwijk said Wednesday when asked if Cahill might play or even start.

The 38-year-old Cahill is Australia’s top career scorer with 50 goals in 106 appearances. He has been on Australia’s roster four World Cups, and could join an elite club with four other players who have scored in four straight editions of soccer’s top tournament.

With his hat trick against Spain in Portugal’s opener, Cristiano Ronaldo joined the group. Others who have goals in four consecutive World Cups include Pele, Uwe Seeler and Miroslav Klose.

Cahill did not play in the Socceroos’ 2-1 loss to France in their World Cup opener in Kazan on Saturday. After playing Denmark in Samara, Australia will face Peru on Tuesday in Sochi.

France and Denmark lead Group C with wins. Australia, the lowest-ranked team in the group at No. 36, is vying to advance out of the group stage for the first time since 2006.

Van Marwijk, appointed as coach of the Socceroos in January, did not reveal any of his plans against the 12th-ranked Danes. He said all 23 players were fit and available for the match.

”I will not talk about changes or no changes,” the coach said. ”We analyzed the (France) game very well. Everybody was disappointed, including myself. But we also know that we have to go on.”

There has also been speculation about whether 19-year-old midfielder Daniel Arzani would assume a starting role in the match. He came on as a sub against France.

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