Everton's Tim Cahill has been ruled out of Australia's World Cup qualifiers against Malaysia and Oman despite playing "through the pain barrier" against Liverpool.
The midfielder was set to fly home for the Socceroos' matches in Canberra and Sydney but the Toffees' medical staff have insisted he needs more recovery time.
The 31-year-old initially sustained an ankle injury in a clash with Manchester City captain Vincent Kompany nine days ago.
Cahill was passed fit for Saturday's 216th Merseyside derby which saw Everton suffer successive 2-0 defeats in the Premier League.
Everton's head of medicine Danny Donachie told the club's official website: "Tim played through the pain barrier on Saturday against Liverpool but the scan showed the best course of action now is rest and rehab.
"Tim is disappointed but it is a straightforward decision because he would not be fit enough to play in the games in Australia."
Cahill will undergo intensive rehabilitation at Everton's Finch Farm training ground throughout the international break.
Meanwhile, Fulham and Australia goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer is also unavailable for international duty after aggravating a back injury in the Cottagers' 6-0 demolition of QPR on Sunday.