Tommy Oar is using the experience of getting so close to the World Cup in South Africa four years ago to ensure he makes the cut for Brazil this time around.
Oar finds himself in the same position he was in 2010, part of the preliminary Socceroos squad for the biggest event in the football world.
Then an 18-year-old prodigy, Oar was considered a big chance to go to South Africa and was even chosen alongside Craig Moore to model the Socceroos' new playing strip.
Things didn't go to plan though, with coach Pim Verbeek cutting the inexperienced youngster from his final 23.
But after establishing himself in the Dutch Eredivisie at FC Utrecht over the last few seasons, an improved Oar is confident now is his time on the world stage.
"That was a fantastic moment for me to have the opportunity to go to the last World Cup and be a part of the camp," Oar said from the team's camp in Terrigal on Thursday.
"I obviously missed out on final selection but I guess being 18 it was a fantastic experience and I definitely learned a lot in my time there.
"I'm four years older now and I've got a bit more experience playing in Europe and in the Eredivisie.
"Hopefully I can use it to my advantage in the next few weeks and try and stake my claim to get into the final 23."
Given his rise in recent seasons and his form in the Netherlands this year, Oar is a near certainty to be on the plane for Brazil.
He was part of the most recent squad against Ecuador in March, where the Socceroos produced some breathtaking football in the first half to open up a 3-0 lead.
While things went sour after the break – with Mitch Langerak sent off en route to losing 4-3 – Oar believes the young squad showed just how much potential they have,
And with close to a month to prepare as a squad before their World Cup opener against Chile, things will only get better.
"We're very inexperienced but I think that will only make everybody more enthusiastic and hopefully that kind of energy can help us perform to our best," Oar said.
"If you look at the Ecuador game we had the same fairly inexperienced team playing that game and we showed in the first half what we're capable of and I think with a longer preparation time we can make that even stronger."
The Socceroos will have their first training session together on the NSW Central Coast on Friday in the lead-up to their farewell game against South Africa in Sydney on May 26.comments