Back in the green and gold after an injury lay-off, Ivan Franjic says he is fit and raring to go as he looks to win back his Socceroos starting position.
Franjic was Ange Postecoglou’s the first-choice right-back for the recent FIFA World Cup, only to injure his hamstring in the first group game against Chile.
The former Brisbane Roar star hasn’t featured for the national side since but is back in the fold for these friendlies against UAE and Qatar.
The World Cup experience – even as brief as it was – has left him hanging for and hungry to get his Socceroos jersey back.
“Playing in the biggest sporting event in the world is something special and something I’ll look back on at the end of the year and really appreciate,” Franjic told FFA TV.
“But now I’m here in the UAE, I haven’t played with the national team for a while and I just want to put my foot forward and cement a starting position.”
Franjic admits he doesn’t know a lot about UAE and their football but expects a tough challenge, especially in the intense heat and humidity in Abu Dhabi.
After snapping a five-game losing streak with a 3-2 win over Saudi Arabia last month, the Torpedo Moscow right-back says it’s vital for the side to start stringing a few wins together and building some momentum ahead of January’s Asian Cup.
“It’s good to have a good performance but now it’s about getting the results because our performances have improved but we haven’t really been getting results,” Franjic said.
“It’s time to change leading into the Asian Cup, starting on (Saturday morning AEDT) gives the players the perfect opportunity to show we’ve turned the corner.”
Aussies Abroad: Milligan triumphs in battle of the Aussies, Jeggo suffers defeat in Austria
There were two Caltex Socceroos in action across Europe on Saturday morning (AEDT) as Mark Milligan and Jimmy Jeggo stepped out for Hibernian and Austria Vienna respectively.... Milligan played the full 90 in Scotland as Hibs overcame Dundee in a 4-2 thriller at Dens Park. AUS
Aussies Abroad: Vukovic injured as Genk exit Europa League
It wasn’t a happy night in the UEFA Europa League for Danny Vukovic as he was stretched off in Genk’s 4-1 loss to Slavia Prague on Friday morning (AEDT). AUSSIES ABROAD: Vukovic features in top-two battle NEW DEAL: In-form Vukovic rewarded with contract extension Still sco
When to watch your Caltex Socceroos this weekend
There's plenty for Caltex Socceroos fans to sink their teeth into this weekend with our homegrown heroes gearing up for some massive matches. Mathew Leckie attempts to slay a giant in Germany, two Aussies set aside national team loyalties in Denmark and Aaron Mooy goes on the
In-form Vukovic earns Genk contract extension
Caltex Socceroos goalkeeper Danny Vukovic has been rewarded for his excellent form with a two-season contract extension at Belgian club KRC Genk. The 33-year-old's deal was due to expire at the end of the campaign but the Pro League leaders have taken up their option to extend