Star Perth Glory striker, Uruguayan Bruno Fornaroli, has earned a shock Socceroos call-up for Australia's World Cup qualifiers against Japan and Saudi Arabia.
Perth Glory coach Richard Garcia predicts Bruno Fornaroli will become an asset for the Socceroos after the Uruguayan earned a dream call-up for Australia's crucial World Cup qualifiers.
- Perth's Bruno Fornaroli has received a call up to this month's Socceroos squad.
- The 34 year old has not been capped by Australia.
- The Socceroos face Japan and Saudi Arabia later this month.
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Fornaroli played for Uruguay's under-17 youth team in 2003, but a change in the FIFA eligibility rules in 2020 means the 34-year-old is now eligible to represent the Socceroos.
The star striker will be named in Graham Arnold's extended squad for the crunch matches against Japan and Saudi Arabia this month.
Australia must win both games to guarantee their spot in this year's World Cup.
Anything less and the Socceroos are likely to finish third in their group - thrusting them into a treacherous play-off route.
Fornaroli has built a reputation as one of the A-League's best strikers since arriving in Australia in 2015.
In 138 matches across stints with Melbourne City and Perth Glory, Fornaroli has scored 81 goals.
Garcia is confident Fornaroli will thrive in the Socceroos' set-up.
"He brings experience, quality, finishing ability. I don't think Bruno feels pressure," Garcia said.
"It will be a different proposition when he's got the quality that's in the national team (around him).
"He'll be able to find the ball in different places. I think he'll be a real threat.
"He's got a great ability to hold up the ball and bring other players in the game, and that's going to be a real asset to the national team."
Garcia said Fornaroli was over the moon when he was delivered the good news about his Socceroos call-up.
"I found out, so I mentioned it to him. The first thing he did was smile and say, 'I'm an Aussie now'," Garcia said.
"It was a nice moment seeing him so proud to be an Australian."
Fornaroli has scored seven goals in 14 games this season for Glory.
But he missed a perfect chance to add to that tally when his penalty was saved in Tuesday night's 0-0 draw with Central Coast in Perth.
Garcia expects Fornaroli to play in Saturday's home clash with Brisbane before he links up with the Socceroos.