Jamie Maclaren's swift adjustment from Dubai holidaymaker to the Caltex Socceroos' last-chance saloon convinced Bert van Marwijk to include him in a beefed-up attacking arsenal.
The 24-year-old striker was on Sunday (AEST) named in Australia's final 23 for this month's FIFA World Cup, just seven days after arriving as a latecomer to the pre-tournament camp in Antalya, Turkey.
His hopes looked over when he was excluded from the preliminary 26-man group selected in May, but a brief injury concern over Tomi Juric opened the door to a recall and Maclaren made the most of the opportunity.
"He came in and I'm satisfied about him. He's a typical player who always gets a chance [to score]," van Marwijk told reporters.
"It's difficult for him because he was already on vacation for eight or nine days.
"I wanted to give him a real chance, a week. He had to train very hard from the first moment.
"We train very intensively and [often] two times a day. It was really difficult for him, not really fair for him.
"But he made a good impression. I think I need him."
Maclaren's inclusion alongside exciting Melbourne City winger Daniel Arzani heralded a concerted move to expand the squad's options in the front third.
Van Marwijk cited the emergence of Western Sydney Wanderers right-back Josh Risdon, who impressed in the 4-0 friendly victory over the Czech Republic, as giving him the confidence to redistribute resources.
SQUAD BREAKDOWN: How 23 players will battle for XI roles
"[What is] very positive is the development of Josh Risdon," the Dutchman said. "I have another two players in the squad who can play that position.
"We have enough central defenders and the defensive midfield players are the same.
"And now I have options in front with several types of centre-forwards, number nines.
"Andrew Nabbout can also play on the side and the number 10 position. I have more players who can play in more positions."
When are your Caltex Socceroos in action this weekend?
Two Caltex Socceroos stars are set to go head-to-head in Scotland, while there is another pressure-filled 90 minutes ahead for Maty Ryan's relegation-threatened Brighton & Hove Albion. Trent Sainsbury and Aziz Behich’s PSV continue to push for the title in the Netherlands, whi
Former Socceroo Matt McKay to retire at season's end
Brisbane Roar skipper and 59-time Caltex Socceroo Matt McKay has decided the Hyundai A-League 2018/19 Season will be his last, bringing to an end his 18-year professional journey. McKay confirmed his retirement on Thursday, bringing down the curtain on a glittering career for
Aussies Abroad: Ryan’s Brighton in danger of relegation after Cardiff defeat
Maty Ryan’s Brighton & Hove Albion are perilously close to the relegation zone in the English Premier League after slumping to a 2-0 defeat at home against Cardiff City on Wednesday morning (AEST). There was little the Caltex Socceroos gloveman could do to keep out a goal in e