Pavlesic targeting Joeys silverware, talks Bayern Munich move

The prospect of becoming the first Australian junior national team to win a major trophy certainly serves as motivation for Subway Joeys Captain Anthony Pavlesic.

No Australian youth team men's or women's has claimed a junior continental (AFC) or international title (FIFA) as of yet and the 17-year-old is hopeful they can rewrite history.

WATCH: Joeys advance to Quarter Finals after Tajikistan win

The Subway Joeys advanced to the Quarter Finals of the AFC U17 Asian Cup Thailand 2023™ on Thursday night following a 2-0 win over Tajikistan and will now face Japan, the winners of Group D, on Monday night, 8pm AEST.

While the ambition is to win the tournament, the Aussies are just one victory away from qualifying for the FIFA U-17 World Cup 2023™, currently scheduled to run 10 November – 2 December 2023, with the host country to be confirmed by FIFA following Peru’s withdrawal as tournament host.

"It would be absolutely massive," Pavlesic said in an interview with Football Australia Media.

"Not just for me as a captain but for the whole team for the coaches, for all our careers as well.

"We know the spotlight that a tournament like this has on the whole footballing community in Australia.

"Once the team performs, individuals on the team standout as well.

"But it would be absolutely massive for everyone to be the first team to achieve something like that, first junior (Australian) team, it'd be amazing for everyone involved."

Anthony Pavlesic
Photo Credit: AFC Media.

Not only has it been a memorable week for the young shot-stopper with his country, in clubland it was announced he was leaving the Central Coast Mariners after signing a three-year contract with Bundesliga heavyweights Bayern Munich for an undisclosed fee.

Pavlesic explains how the move came about following a successful trial back in February.

"Going back a few months ago sort of towards the beginning of the year, my agent got the deal done through his contact, that's how it all sort of started," he recalled.

"It's a massive thing personally for me, very exciting and for the family as well for the sacrifices we've had to make, my parents in particular and just feeling support from everyone.

"It's helped me get to this point but still still focused here in Thailand and that's number one priority at the moment and then we'll deal with Bayern Munich after."

Pavlesic learned under the tutelage of Mariners goalkeeping coach, Miguel Miranda, a man who helped develop the careers of Jan Oblak and Ederson during their teenage years at Portuguese powerhouse Benfica.

The pair later established themselves as first-team players for the Eagles where their careers took off before transferring to Atletico Madrid and Manchester City in 2014 and 2017 respectively.

The highly-regarded goalkeeper said he is excited to be joining the Bavarians, a team that is steeped in history, success and prestige and considered one of Europe's most elite clubs.

Learning off the likes of legendary custodian Manuel Neuer is also something that Pavlesic is eagerly anticipating, but only after Australia's campaign comes to an end with his sole focus on achieving success in Thailand. 

"I think you have to look at Manuel Neuer, one of the greatest 'keepers of our generation has come through the Bundesliga come through Bayern Munich, a club which I'm going to," he said.

"And the style and it's sort of comes close to the top of the game as a goalkeeper you look in the league there and it's just a massive league to be going to.

"There's been a lot of Australians that have played in the league before and been really successful.

"So it's really exciting to be put in that environment now, very professional and just can't wait to get over there."