Grant relishing friendly competition in camp

Despite the ever-increasing competition for places in the Socceroos' starting eleven, Rhyan Grant is relishing the challenge of solidifying his spot in Green and Gold. 

The Sydney FC fullback has played fourteen times for Australia since debuting in November 2018, consistently proving his quality throughout his appearances.

In his last showing for the Socceroos, Grant, who has 237 appearances for Sydney FC in A-League Men, scored his maiden goal with a cleverly controlled header to win the Socceroos their tenth game in succession.

WATCH: Rhyan Grant nods home his first international goal

Meanwhile, fellow right-back Fran Karacic is slowly coming back into the Brescia Calcio side following a calf injury that denied him from playing in the previous qualifiers and during the start of the Serie B season.

Brescia currently sits third in the Italian second division, on fourteen points from seven games played. 

Grant spoke to Socceroos Insider about the current competition with Karacic for a starting position in the squad on the right side of defence.

“In the last 12 months, there have been a few right backs that have come on the scene and have done really well, especially the younger players so it's always good for competition,” he said. 

October Thin Banner Final

“For me personally, it's great to keep pushing me forward and making sure I'm doing the best I can and providing what I need to for the team.

“It's a great sort of culture we have here, the competition amongst all the boys is always strong.

At the end of the day, everyone wants to play and it’s up to Arnie to make that decision, but we've got a great culture, and I think that's the reason we've been doing so well of late.”

After scoring his first goal for Australia, Grant headed up to Scotland to train with Hibernian FC, where compatriot Martin Boyle plies his trade. 

“Obviously I've been at Sydney my whole career so to have a new experience was great for me,” said Grant on training with Hibernian, who currently sit third in the Scottish Premiership.

“Edinburgh is a beautiful city so that in itself was really good, and obviously the football was great standard - it was good for me to test myself and see what it was like in Europe.

“It was great for me to keep fit and keep ticking along.”

The Socceroos will yet again train and play at the air-conditioned Khalifa International Stadium, which will host matches during the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022

The Socceroos are currently stationed in Doha as the prepare to play against Oman at the Khalifa International Stadium on Friday morning (AEDT). 

Grant himself is no stranger to training away from home, with Doha becoming an increasingly familiar place for the four-time A-League champion during Socceroos camps.

“I think it's a great base for us,” said Grant.

“We've stayed at the same hotel and trained at the same facilities the last few times, so it does make it a lot easier. 

It feels like a home away from home.”

Grant and Karacic are Australia's two options at right back during their October fixtures, as the Socceroos look to build upon their record 10-win streak within a single qualification campaign. 

FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ – AFC Asian Qualifiers – Road to Qatar (Final Round)

Matchday 3: Australia v Oman
Date: Thursday, 7 October 2021
Venue: Khalifa International Stadium, Doha, Qatar
Kick-off: 9.30pm local (5.30am AEDT – Friday, 8 October 2021)
Broadcast: Live and free in Australia on 10 and 10 Play – pre-game coverage from 5am AEDT

Matchday 4: Japan v Australia
Date: Tuesday, 12 October 2021
Venue: Saitama Stadium, Saitama, Japan
Kick-off: 7.14pm local (9.14pm AEDT)
Broadcast: Live and free in Australia on 10 Bold and 10 Play – pre-game coverage from 8.30pm AEDT