Coyne makes Australia debut

COLCHESTER United defender Chris Coyne made his international debut for Australia in a World Cup qualifying defeat at the hands of Iraq over the weekend.

Carl Marston

By Carl Marston

COLCHESTER United defender Chris Coyne made his international debut for Australia in a World Cup qualifying defeat at the hands of Iraq over the weekend.

Coyne has therefore joined an exclusive group of U's players who have represented their country while on the books of the Essex club - American Mike Masters (1992) and Nigerian Efe Sodje (2000) are also members of this elite group.


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After two games as an unused substitute, ex-West Ham, Dundee and Luton centre-half Coyne was handed his Socceroos debut from the start in Saturday's 1-0 defeat to Iraq, staged in Dubai.

He even shifted to a more unfamiliar role at left-back for the start of the second-half, before eventually being substituted in the 65th minute.

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Coyne said: "On a personal note, I was pleased to make my debut. It's something I have always wanted to do, and I have done it now.

"I was happy enough with my own performance. It was difficult to come into, in terms of the heat and the circumstances with the weather, but as far as acquitting myself, I was quite pleased.

"I didn't give anyone a chance and didn't have a lot to do to be honest, but hopefully I have done enough to impress the manager and push my case for selection next week. I just have to worry about the Qatar game and making sure I get selected for that," added Coyne.

Brisbane-born Coyne signed for Colchester from Luton for a club record £350,000 in January, and went on to make 16 appearances for the U's during the second half of the season.

Keeper Mark Schwarzer's misjudgement in allowing a cross to loop over his head for the only goal of the game (28 minutes), against Iraq, has left Australia still facing a battle to reach the next phase of the World Cup qualifying campaign. They are currently level on points with Qatar at the top.

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