Australia will host both legs of their Olympic soccer qualifier against Yemen later this month because of the political turmoil in the Middle Eastern state, the Football Federation Australia (FFA) said on Monday.
The FFA had been advised by the Australian foreign ministry that sending their team, nicknamed the Olyroos, to the Arabian Peninsula state was not advisable.
“Obviously we are really happy with this outcome in light of the current situation in Yemen,” Australia coach Aurelio Vidmar said in a news release.
“It was always our preference to play both matches in Australia to avoid unnecessary travel where possible.
“FFA has done a tremendous job in negotiating this outcome and we thank Yemen for agreeing to this offer.”
The matches, part of Asian qualification for next year’s London Olympics, will take place in Gosford on June 19 and Newcastle four days later.