Nearly ten years on from his first appearance for the Young Socceroos Tarek Elrich thought the opportunity to represent his country at senior level had passed him by.
Having played for three different clubs in three years in the Hyundai A-League the 28-year-old’s career had been in a downward spiral.
However the defender found a new home at Adelaide United and his sublime domestic form this season now sees him on the cusp of pulling on the green and gold.
“It’s massive for me, I’d love to get the opportunity to go out there with the boys and give it my best crack,” Elrich told FFA TV from Socceroos camp.
“Obviously a debut is something I’ve been looking forward to for a long time. It’s a dream I thought was never going to come.
“I’m just glad that I’m here and as I’ve said in many interviews before, I’ll do whatever it takes and give it my best crack and see how we go.”
Elrich, who had never been to Europe prior to his recent national call-up, is loving the experience of being in camp and a part of the “Socceroos family”.
“I’ve really enjoyed my time here, the boys have been very welcoming and obviously being a part of the squad for that first game against Germany was something I’ll never forget.
“The boys have been very good. The training sessions are very up tempo, short sessions, which is great but the quality of the boys here is amazing.
“When the boys come into camp, especially the European based players, they obviously love being in the company of their Aussie mates.”
While the right-back is hoping to earn his first Socceroos cap against FYR Macedonia on Tuesday morning (6.00am AEDT), he’s determined to remain a part of the set-up going forward.
“With the boys we’ve got here the sky’s the limit for us and from what I’ve seen so far throughout the week anything’s possible with this team.
“For me I think I’m at a good age, 28-years-old. I’ve had a few set-backs in club football but in saying that it’s never too late.
“Ange has picked a team based on form and I’ve been rewarded for what I’ve been doing at my club in Adelaide. It’s a massive buzz.”
FYR MACEDONIA v AUSTRALIA
National Arena Philip II of Macedonia Stadium, Skopje, FYR Macedonia
Monday 30 March 2015, 8.00pm local kick-off (6.00am Tuesday 31 March AEDT)
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