Behich eyes Socceroos starting berth

Socceroos defender Aziz Behich is hoping to build on his career-best club form by cementing his spot as Bert van Marwijk’s first-choice left-back ahead of the FIFA World Cup in Russia.

The Bursaspor defender has gone from strength to strength this season becoming one of the first names on the team sheet for the Turkish Super Lig side.

After joining his Australia teammates in Oslo ahead of their World Cup warm-up games against Norway and Colombia, the 27-year-old revealed his experience of being a part of the Socceroos' two-game playoff against Honduras is driving him to secure his spot on the plane to Russia.

"Those two last games were great, it's always going to be a part of me forever," Behich said.

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"It's great to help the nation qualifiy for another World Cup. To be part of this group is amazing. We've got a strong group here, a really good bond with all the players and everyone put in throughout the campaign. We got what we deserved."



The former Melbourne Heart player will likely do battle with Millwall defender James Meredith for the left-back position in van Marwijk’s new-look Socceroos side and will be hoping to further his claim with an impressive showing against both Norway and Colombia.

Behich has developed a new side to his game this season, scoring five goals and providing two assists for Bursaspor. A skillset he believes could give him the edge in his Socceroos selection stoush.

"I'm having probably one of the best seasons I've had in my career... I'm at a good club. We (Bursaspor) should be doing a bit better now as a team, but it happens in football, we get these downsides," Behich said.

"I'm just trying to keep my performances to a high level and put my hand up to be selected for the national team.

“This is why we play - to represent our country at the highest level. I’ve just got to keep my head down and keep working hard and make sure I’m ready if called upon.”


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Published 20 March 2018 at 12:09pm
By Nick Houghton