Matt Jurman says the Socceroos at this World Cup can show the A-League and Australian players in a positive light.
Jurman is one of a number of national team players who launched their careers in the A-League, with the defender having stints at Sydney FC and Brisbane Roar before heading abroad.
Of the 2018 World Cup squad only Tim Cahill didn't spend any formative years in the competition, while the likes of Daniel Arzani, Dimi Petratos and Josh Risdon are currently on the books of A-League sides.
The domestic competition has taken a battering in recent times, both on and off the field, but Jurman believes the Socceroos can show how important the A-League is in the development of Aussie players by performing well in Russia.
"Definitely, there’s a lot of boys that have come through the A-League and have done a good job," he said.
"They’ve moved overseas and still done well. I think the A-League has been a great stepping stone for me personally. I had a great time at Sydney FC when I was there in the last few years, so it’s great to see of these A-League boys now who are probably ready to move to the next step.
"The A-League for me was a great step."
Jurman left the Sky Blues last year to join Korean outfit Suwon Bluewings. The centre back made his debut for Australia under Ange Postecoglou in October in the play-off against Syria.
Jurman has been on the bench in recent friendlies against Czechia and Hungary, with midfielder Mark Milligan paired with Trent Sainsbury in defence.
The 28 year-old admits it has been difficult not getting much game-time.
"It’s been tough,” he said.
"You want to be out there with the boys. Hopefully when the time comes you get your chance and you’re ready to take it."
Wollongong-born Jurman said he is living the dream to be at the World Cup, considering he earned his first cap less than a year ago and has only four caps to his name.
“To make my debut only last year, it’s obviously a dream come true,” he said.
“Before those games I wasn’t even in the squad so it’s amazing.”