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Three Socceroos still searching for new homes

Three Socceroos -- Trent Sainsbury, Tomi Juric and Mile Jedinak -- are yet to finalise their futures as the European transfer window enters its final few weeks.

The English window slammed shut on Thursday, with Aaron Mooy and Massimo Luongo finding new homes, but clubs in the rest of Europe can continue to do business up until Sept. 2.

That gives hope for free agent Jedinak, scarcely-seen striker Juric and now Sainsbury, who has been made surplus to requirements at PSV Eindhoven.

PSV boss Mark van Bommel, the same man who held an assistant role with the Socceroos during their 2018 World Cup campaign, announced Sainsbury was free to find a new club on the weekend.

Sainsbury made just four starts last term, though he did play in the opening game of PSV's league campaign last week. It remains to be seen where the 27-year-old could end up.

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Much interest also lies in Jedinak's future, with a number of teams in both Australia and the Middle East being linked with the 35-year-old. He left Aston Villa at the end of his contract in June, having helped them secure promotion back to the Premier League.

While Jedinak, Sainsbury and Juric remain on the market, a number of Australia internationals have locked in new deals.

Mooy joined national teammate Mat Ryan at Brighton and Hove Albion, signing on season-long loan, while Luongo ended a four-year tenure at Queens Park Rangers by joining fellow second-tier club Sheffield Wednesday.

Australia captain Mark Milligan has switched Hibernian for Southend United in England's League One, and Alex Gersbach has joined Danish club AGF.

That the Socceroos skipper is playing in the third tier in England demonstrates Australian football's low ebb.

Indeed, the number of Australian men set to play in Europe's biggest leagues this season is miserly.

Trent Sainsbury
Trent Sainsbury has been told that he can leave PSV Eindhoven.

Four years ago, Australia had 10 senior representatives in the top flights of powerhouse nations England, Spain, Italy and Germany.

This year it will be just four: Mooy, Ryan, and Germany-based pair Mathew Leckie (Hertha Berlin) and Brandon Borrello (Freiburg).

That figure doesn't tell the whole story as it's arguably better for players to be competing more regularly at a lower level than stuck on the bench or in the reserves.

But with less than a month before the Socceroos begin their qualifying push for the 2022 World Cup, it's something coach Graham Arnold can hardly be pleased with.

At least two Socceroos mainstays have begun their English seasons with a bang.

Ryan kept a clean sheet in Brighton's opening weekend 3-0 thrashing of Watford while Jackson Irvine scored in Hull City's 2-1 Championship win over Reading.

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