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Arzani talks about his “whirlwind” rise to prominence


Socceroos bolter Daniel Arzani says his ability to gain continuity was key in earning a spot in Bert van Marwijk’s preliminary World Cup squad of 26.

Arzani made his debut for Melbourne City in January and quickly caught the eye with his searing pace and his ability to dribble and create in the final third.

It’s these qualities that has Australian football fans excited about the prospect of the winger representing the Socceroos at the World Cup in Russia.

“It’s been a bit of a whirlwind,” Arzani told SEN’s Whateley.

“I played my first game in the middle of the season and I then strung together start after start.

“I was really thankful for Warren Joyce; he helped me along the way.

“I was playing, getting game time and doing well so everything has moved so quickly to be honest.”

The 19-year-old was born in Iran which makes him eligible to represent both countries with manager Carlos Queiroz a keen admirer of the teenager.

But in consultation with his family, he opted to represent the Socceroos and he revealed his reasons for turning his back on his country of birth.

“I grew up playing for the under 17’s, 20’s and 23’s national teams. It’s such an honour and a privilege to be able to represent the Socceroos,” he said.

“The choice happened quite recently and it came down to the fact that I have lived in Australia most of my life and a lot of my footballing knowledge comes from Australia.

“I spoke with my family and I’m really happy with the decision that I made.”

Having never been called up the senior national squad before, Arzani hasn't been acquainted with his other Socceroos teammates and is yet to meet coach Van Marwijk.

He has however played alongside Tim Cahill during his time at City, and he the Socceroos' all-time leading scorer a profound influence on his overall professionalism.

“He has taught me a lot, perhaps more stuff off the field about how to be a professional and how to conduct yourself all the time,” Arzani said.

“He is a great example to follow.

“Tim is a veteran of the game and one of the most decorated Australian players of all time and I think his spot in the team is secure.”

Arzani is tipped to make the Socceroos squad of 23 which will be announced on the 4th of June.

Listen to Daniel Arzani's chat with Gerard Whateley in the player below

Daniel Arzani Socceroos Whateley

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