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Jesus Kennedy EPL Bound?

Socceroo Josh Kennedy could be set to end his nine-year stay in Germany after his club Karlsruhe was relegated from the Bundesliga on the weekend.

Kennedy ended his nightmare season with two goals as his side hammered Hertha Berlin 4-0, but the result wasn’t enough to preserve Karlsruhe’s stay in the German top flight.

The brace represented his first two goals of a season which has seen him start just 19 times and make four other appearances after a much-publicised fall out with manager Edmund Becker.

Kennedy, who is aiming to get as much game time as possible ahead of next year’s World Cup, has made no secret of his desire to switch clubs, and while he is contracted for another year at the Baden Wurttemberg outfit, has an out clause.

He hinted in an interview two weeks ago that there has been interest been from the English Premier League and that after nine years in German football playing for Stuttgart Kickers, FC Koln, Dymano Dresden, Nuremberg as well as Karlsruhe, it may be time to move on.

Kennedy has become a cult hero among Socceroos fans since his cameo appearances at the 2006 World Cup, where his height caused massive problems for opposition sides. He has scored six goals in 12 international matches, including one in the recent 2-0 win in a World Cup qualifier against Uzbekistan in Sydney.

National coach Pim Verbeek rates him as a very important player in Australia’s hopes at next year’s World Cup should the Socceroos get the one point needed to book their place in the showpiece tournament. Having had plenty of recent game time, Kennedy is likely to feature heavily in the three World Cup qualifiers against Qatar, Bahrain and Japan in June.

Kennedy’s former club Nuremberg, which features Australians Matthew Spiranovic and Dario Vidosic, gets its chance to get back in the Bundesliga with a relegation/promotion playoff against Energie Cottbus, which finished third from bottom in the top flight this season.

Spiranovic hasn’t played since injuring his ankle while in Socceroos camp in November, but is back close to full fitness and should remain at the club should they make it back into the Bundesliga. Former Roar player Dario Vidosic came on as a sub in the weekend’s 2-1 win over 1860 Munich and the 22-year-old is a chance to play in the match against Cottbus.

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Real Football

Published on May 25, 2009

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