Fond memories for Vidosic
Qantas Socceroos winger Dario Vidosic explains how he's evolved since his first call up.
Dario Vidosic recalls his first encounter with Qantas Socceroos coach Pim Verbeek.
The Queensland-bred attacker was called up to the national squad on his home turf on the recommendation of assistant and then Olyroos coach Graham Arnold.
Vidosic now speaks of the experience in an assured manner, but admits it being daunting at the time.
"It was in Brisbane after an Olympic tournament, I came in and I was a bit nervous as it was my first time with all the players," he recalled.
"Pim tried to put a bit of pressure on me saying it's not junior football anymore. I felt I came through it and stepped up and I think he was impressed."
The call up led to Harry Kewell, Tim Cahill, Lucas Neill and company transformed from idols to teammates - in the eyes of Vidosic - in a heartbeat.
Vidosic said training and rubbing shoulders with them and fellow seasoned Qantas Socceroos campaigners had a sudden and positive impact on him.
"Playing with the country's best players you feel you become a better player and they seem to find you where other players might not," Vidosic said.
"But there's so many things I've picked up just sitting with them, talking not just about football but life, and I've definitely carried that over with me and felt I've played better."
How Vidosic would dearly love to emulate Cahill or Kewell's feats of Germany 2006 when the FIFA World Cup rolls around in a few months.
The 22-year-old has joined German Bundesliga II side Duisburg, on loan from top flight side Nuremberg for the remainder of the season.
Vidosic has played left wing for his new side, coming on in the 73rd minute of Duisburg's draw with league leaders Kaiserslautern, a result which Vidosic believes will help his sixth-place team gain confidence and momentum on the home stretch.
The ultimate aim for Vidosic, who has worn no.101 for the Qantas Socceroos, is to make it to South Africa.
"My aim is just to play and score a few goals and keep improving. Each time I've been in camp I've done well and Pim's been happy with me but there's still plenty of improvement left and I still feel there's more to offer."
"If I can get play week in week out for my club and enjoy myself and score goals then that will help with the national team."
Vidosic said playing in the World Cup would be a dream come true.
"It would be amazing and I can't even imagine to think how good the atmosphere would be or what it would be like when the anthem starts playing," he said.
"I definitely want to be on that field when that's happening."