Irvine has sported the ponytail in the past four years and he believes it’s made him distinctive.

The Socceroos are now well settled in camp in Kazan, preparing for their opener against France on Saturday night (AEST 8pm).

Plenty of footballers have flaunted fade haircuts in the 2010s as Irvine revealed Sainsbury was keen on giving the Hull City man a makeover.

“It came out last night actually, Trent tried to convince me that if I score, he gets to shave my head after the game,” Irvine joked.

“I haven’t quite agreed to that bet yet, it’s become part of my trademark and I’ve become quite emotionally attached to it, so I can’t see it going anywhere any time soon.”

The 25-year-old will be realising his dream in Russia and recalls attending Australia v Uruguay in Sydney in 2005 and the Socceroos’ 3-1 win over Japan in Kaiserslautern the following year.

A much shorter-haired Irvine in action for the Young Socceroos in 2013

Irvine’s beginnings started in east Melbourne for Ringwood City, a club that was founded by Dutch-Australians.

Irvine’s grandfather is Dutch and will be following Australia closely because of coaching duo Bert van Marwijk and Mark van Bommel.

“It’s actually his birthday today, so happy 80th opa if you’re reading,” he said.

“He was pleased to see a Dutch coach come in and in particular, someone like Mark who was such a legend as a player as well.

“He’s always had that half debate whether he’d support Holland or Australia, but fortunately enough, it’s an easy decision for him this time.

“He was the one that influenced me and got me into football from a young age.”