James Troisi is watched closely by Bert van Marwijk.
James Troisi is watched closely by Bert van Marwijk.

Nervy Socceroos await Bert’s final ‘brutal’ cut

JAMES Troisi believes his big-game experience can help him make a Russia 2018 impact, as the Socceroos selection knives sharpen.

The "brutal" axing of qualifying regular, defender Bailey Wright, sent shockwaves through the surviving 27-man squad a fortnight ago, with four more cut to satisfy FIFA's 23-player criteria.

Troisi was a regular under Ange Postecoglou, headlined by his Asian Cup final winner and sublime Confederations Cup finish against Chile, although he's played merely 10 minutes under new boss Bert van Marwijk, replacing Tom Rogic in the 0-0 draw with Colombia.

Asked whether he was confident of making the final cut, Troisi was pragmatic.

"That's the harsh reality. It's brutal, brutal. You look at someone like Bailey Wright, he was involved in most of the qualifiers and that's football, it could possibly be me next week. Who knows?" Troisi said.

"I'm old enough and experienced enough to handle it whichever way it goes. You just have to do the right things. I've played regularly this season, we've won the league, physically I'm fantastic, I'm training well, working hard.

"If the coach likes me, great. If not, that's football and you move on. It's devastating because all the hard work you put in, it doesn't guarantee you a spot but you want to be involved.

"It's out of my hands now, it's up to the gaffer and his staff."

Troisi came off the bench against Chile in the 2014 World Cup before starting against Spain.

Armed with a body of big-game international experience, Troisi said France and the like would not faze him.

"Quite a few of us now were at the last World Cup, we've had a big qualification, we've had big teams in Confeds Cup as well so most of us should be used to it and not getting star-struck these days,'' he said.

Daniel Arzani and Andrew Nabbout will be pushing hard for selection.
Daniel Arzani and Andrew Nabbout will be pushing hard for selection.

"I've been involved in some big games against some big players. Earlier in my career I would've been rattled as little, but it's funny - I'm sitting here and they've got a bigger name and whatever but at the end of the day they're just human beings.

"Some are more freakish than others but I've had that experience now, I'm used to it and I've played against some of the best players in the world. There's always the butterflies.

"Being involved in a World Cup is massive and something I want to be involved in again. We had a crazy group (in 2014), but it's a fantastic feeling (lining up against them)."



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