Culina makes friendly comeback

Jason Culina played his first 45 mins of football in more than a year as he continues his comeback with new club Sydney FC.

Jason Culina played his first 45 mins of football in more than a year as he continues his comeback with new club Sydney FC.

In a major boost for the Sky Blues ahead of Saturday-s match against Melbourne Victory, Culina, Pascal Bosschaart and Adam Griffiths all made it through 45 minutes of Sydney's 1-0 friendly win over Western Sydney on Tuesday.

The game was planned as part of the trio's rehabilitation from injury, allowing the club's medical and coaching staff to assess their readiness to return to first-team football.

After the match, Sky Blues coach Ian Crook said it was a big step for all three players.

“It was an important hit out for a few of the boys, especially Jason (Culina), Pascal (Bosschaart) and Adam Griffiths and it was great for them to get through the match unscathed,” Crook said.

“Playing against A-League opposition is a good step in their rehab and with that under their belts we-ll asses how they recover and then make some decisions on when they-ll be ready to get back on the pitch.

“It-s nice to have so many bodies getting closer to returning, especially with the game against Melbourne Victory coming up on Saturday.”

Bosschaart was also pleased to be back on the pitch as he edges closer to a return after rupturing his achilles tendon in March.

“I felt good to be back on the pitch,” Bosschaart said. “It was always the plan to play 45 minutes. I played 30 minutes in a youth team game a couple of weeks ago and now this, which was a step up.

“It-s up to the coaches when I can play. Hopefully that will be soon.”