Milos Degenek admits he’s still struggling to grasp the enormity of Red Star Belgrade's achievement after booking a UEFA Champions League place on Wednesday morning.
The Caltex Socceroos defender, 25, helped haul his boyhood side into Europe’s glamour club competition with an away goals victory over Swiss outfit Young Boys.
It means the 1991 European Cup winners are back at the continent’s top table for a second straight season.
“It is an absolutely amazing feeling to have qualified for the Champions League again two years in a row with this club,” Degenek told socceroos.com.au.
“With this amount of support to bring the Champions League again to Belgrade means the world.
“And having my family [here] is probably the most important thing for me. I played my best football here.
“I went to Saudi Arabia for six months and I’m back here again playing in the Champions League, which is something I could only dream of.
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“Now it’s happened and I’m very happy and proud to be a part of this group. It’s another dream come true.”
Degenek played a key role in the Serbian club’s achievement, scoring his first-ever goal for Red Star in last week’s draw on the road, a result which played a huge role in their qualification.
The former Westfield Sports High School student's return to the Champions League comes almost a year after he provided two crucial assists to help Red Star come back from a two-goal deficit against Red Bull Salzburg to qualify for last season's tournament.
Degenek has now qualified for a third Champions League competition over two continents (Europe and Asia) all within one year, after also reaching the ACL with Saudi club Al Hilal earlier this year.
Degenek and Red Star will learn their group stage opponents on Friday morning (AEST) at the official draw in Monaco.
The first match day of this season’s Champions League comes on September 17-18, a week after the Caltex Socceroos open their 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification campaign against Kuwait.
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